For Immediate Release: July 25, 2018
Contact: Jayden Lapin, 646-205-7736
SMARTERSAFER APPLAUDS CONGRESS FOR PASSING NFIP EXTENSION, URGES FOR LONG-TERM REFORM
WASHINGTON, D.C. — SmarterSafer, a national coalition of environmental groups, taxpayer advocates, insurance stakeholders, housing organizations and mitigation advocates, released the following statement today in response to Congress enacting a necessary short-term extension to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through November, preventing a disastrous program lapse during peak hurricane season. Despite the program’s crushing $25 billion-dollar debt, the NFIP supplies more than 5.2 million property owners with vital flood insurance coverage.
“Though SmarterSafer is pleased that the House took action so that NFIP will not lapse, it is disheartening that our representatives have once again declined to enact much needed reforms to NFIP, which has borrowed over $25 billion from US taxpayers. We urge Congress to use the next 4 months to create a comprehensive legislative package that addresses ensures that the program better protects people in harm’s way, the environment and taxpayers.
“The necessary overhaul of the nation’s flood insurance program should include measures that promote mitigation against the threat of flooding; update and improve outdated flood-risk mapping techniques; ensure full communication of flood-risk data to communities and home-buyers; and ensure consumers can choose private flood policies. Recent studies have found private insurance could offer cheaper premiums, giving Congress the opportunity to reduce premiums for a majority of policyholders nationwide – but Congress has not yet acted on this. These reforms will save taxpayers billions annually and contribute to a smarter, safer and more robust system of flood insurance that will better protect people and property in harm’s way.”
SmarterSafer recently sent a letter to congressional leaders urging long-term reform to the National Flood Insurance Program. Click here to learn more. If you are interested in speaking with a member of the coalition, please contact Jayden Lapin at 646-205-7736.
SmarterSafer.org is a national coalition that is made up of a diverse chorus of voices united in favor of environmentally responsible, fiscally sound approaches to natural catastrophe policy that promote public safety. The coalition believes that the Federal government has a role in encouraging and helping homeowners to undertake mitigation efforts to safeguard their homes against natural disasters. At the same time, the coalition opposes measures that put people’s lives at risk at the expense of taxpayers. Measures such as subsidizing artificially low rates for homeowners’ insurance policies help to encourage construction in environmentally sensitive and unsafe areas. The coalition is working to ensure that Congress does not incentivize people to live in harm’s way in places prone to hurricanes and floods.