As noted in a previous post, on November 14 the US House of Representatives passed H.R. 2874, also known as the 21st Century Flood Reform Act.  The legislation is now in the US Senate and has been referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.  FIRM supports an alternative bill–H.R. 3285, also known as the Sustainable, Affordable, Fair, and Efficient NFIP Reauthorization Act of 2017 (SAFE-NFIP).  The SAFE-NFIP Act was introduced in the House in July of 2017 and includes as its co-sponsors Congressman Curbelo, who opposed H.R. 2874, and Senators Nelson and Rubio who are co-sponsors of the Senate companion bill.

It is unlikely that the Senate will pass the House bill as is, so there is hope that changes could be made that will be more helpful for policy holders.  The NFIP as is has been extended until December 8, and if the Senate doesn’t pass a final version, another extension will kick the reauthorization down the road another few months.

FIRM is grateful to the Monroe County Federal legislative team for their detailed analysis of the bills and for sharing that analysis with FIRM so that we can better explain the differences to our members. In this series of posts, we will compare the two pieces of legislation, beginning with premium increases.  We will refer to the bill that passed the House as 21st Century Flood Reform Act and the legislation that we believe is more favorable as the SAFE-NFIP Act.

  • 21st Century Flood Reform Act will increase costs for nearly all policy holders through increases in premiums and fees, and potentially most egregiously for communities with housing stock that has higher than average replacement costs (above $190,000/home).
  • SAFE-NFIP Act caps premium increases at 10% year on any policy holder.  Currently, premiums can increase by as much as 25% per year.

Takeaway:  the 21st Century Flood Reform Act is  worse than an extension of current law or the SAFE-NFIP Act, neither of which significantly change the status quo with respect to premiums, fees, or the setting of rates.

Please contact Senator Nelson and Senator Rubio and let them know that you do not support the 21st Century Flood Reform Act.  Thank them for being co-sponsors of the SAFE-NFIP Act and urge them to continue to support an NFIP reform bill that addresses affordability, mitigation and integrity of the program.  If your primary residence is in a state other than Florida, research where your members of Congress stand on NFIP reauthorization, and urge them to support the SAFE-NFIP as well.  Flooding is no longer just an issue for coastal communities, and we all need a National Flood Insurance Program that works!

Read the next post comparing how the two bills treat Community Wide Mitigation.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This