National Flood Insurance Program extended, senators fight rate increases

Local News

WASHINGTON D.C. (BRPROUD) — Congress passed legislation to keep the federal government funded in the short term and the package included extending the National Flood Insurance Program. Senators are still pushing to delay FEMA’s newest rate increase with the Risk Rating 2.0 program.

In 2018, it was halted with the belief it was not fully ready to be rolled out. Now they believe that people do not understand the program to properly implement it.

The program changes how FEMA determines rates for people in higher-risk areas for flooding. Senators John Kennedy and Bill Cassidy said the rate of increase is too high for working-class families.

Under the program, Sen. Cassidy said people will see around an 18% increase. A study by the Congressional Budget Office shows around 900,000 policyholders will potentially drop their coverage due to costs. The senators’ goal is to cap the increases at 9%.

Kennedy and Cassidy are joined in support by Sen. Bob Menendez from New Jersey to freeze the program. They said there needs to be more funding for mitigation efforts like elevating houses in flood zones to help with the insurance costs in the long term.

Starting Oct. 1 any new policies will be under the Risk Rating 2.0 system. In April of next year, all policyholders will have to have the adjustment unless President Biden signs an executive order to delay it.

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