With the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) set to expire at the end of the week, on Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio brought out a proposal to reauthorize it until the end of September 2019.
Rubio joined Republican U.S. Sens. Bill Cassidy and John Kennedy of Louisiana and U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey to introduce the legislation which “would ensure retroactive coverage in the event of a programmatic lapse.”
“While I am frustrated with the continued need for extensions, it has become clear that we need additional time to come to a consensus on bipartisan and bicameral reforms to the NFIP,” Rubio said. “Floridians who rely on this program cannot afford this uncertainty when we enter the 2019 hurricane season. I urge my colleagues to pass this important extension as soon as possible.”
“More than five million Americans depend on the National Flood Insurance Program,” Kennedy said. “I want to thank Sen. Rubio for his work on this long-term extension that is vital to families and the economy. For those of us who live along the Gulf Coast, the NFIP means we don’t have to worry every time it rains.”
“We must prevent the National Flood Insurance Program from lapsing and set the stage for long-term reforms,” said Dr. Cassidy. “We need a more accountable, affordable and sustainable system that is good for Louisiana and good for taxpayers.”
“The National Flood Insurance Program needs to be comprehensively reformed to make the program more fair, affordable, efficient and solvent, which is what my SAFE NFIP would do,” said Menendez. “But with the NFIP extension expiring it’s critical that we prevent a lapse that would disrupt the real estate market and leave thousands of families uninsured and vulnerable. This extension will give Congress time to pass a long-term reauthorization with real, meaningful reforms in line with my SAFE NFIP Act, which is the most bipartisan flood insurance bill in the Senate.”
In the middle of last month, Rubio and those same senators brought out a proposal to extend the NFIP until the end of May.
“The National Flood Insurance Program is critically important to my home state of Florida,” Rubio said when he pushed the six month extension. “It is extremely unfortunate that another extension is needed, but it is imperative that Congress does not allow the program to lapse. Floridians cannot afford that kind of uncertainty. I urge leadership to bring this up for a vote as soon as possible, and look forward to continued work with my colleagues on bipartisan reforms to ensure the program is affordable and sustainable.”