House Leader Promises Vote on Flood Insurance Rate Delay

By Andrew G. Simpson | February 14, 2014

The Republican leadership in the House of Representatives is promising to take up legislation to delay certain flood insurance premium increases during the week of Feb. 24.

The details of any House bill remain a mystery but the House version is expected to differ from the broad Senate version passed earlier this month (67-32). The Senate bill would effectively cancel all increases that are being implemented under the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 for four years.

Backers of a House bill — the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act — that copies the Senate bill say they have more than 225 co-sponsors. However, House leaders, including Speaker John Boehner, have said they will not back the broad Senate approach but might consider more targeted relief.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., this week said that the House will consider a “modified version” of the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act the week of Feb. 24.

“The Senate bill irresponsibly removes much needed reforms and imposes additional costs on taxpayers,” Cantor said in a statement. “The House will act to protect the flood insurance program but also protect homeowners from unreasonable and unrealistic premium increases.”

Cantor said legislative text and additional details will be available at a later date.

The White House has also expressed concerns about the Senate bill.

Louisiana Congressman Says Leadership Post Lost after Flood Insurance Vote

Meanwhile, U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., said he’s been booted from a Republican leadership position because he broke with GOP leaders over the flood insurance bill.

Key House Republicans Oppose Delaying Flood Insurance Increases

Also, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Tex., chair of the House Financial Services Committee, said before a Heritage Action crowd this week that any legislation help homeowners should not do away with changes in Biggert-Waters intended to address the National Flood Insurance Program’s $24 billion debt.

“I will not be part of an action that fundamentally undermines what I viewed at the time as very modest reforms of the National Flood Insurance Program,” Hensarling said at the conservative forum.

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Latest Comments

  • February 17, 2014 at 2:05 pm
    Squandered Youth says:
    Don't be so quick to give FEMA a pass. No statute like B-W gets crafted without agency input. There is nothing in the legislative history indicating FEMA warned B-W would ha... read more
  • February 17, 2014 at 12:28 pm
    Bill Price says:
    I plan to post more Sources, Copies of Congressional Research, and OMB documents on USLA.US by Friday. ( Have to work some time.) Bill Price
  • February 17, 2014 at 10:52 am
    Squandered Youth says:
    You can't make an affordable flood insurance program actuarally sound on a going-forward basis when you burden it at the start with $24 billion in debt from a prior regime. T... read more
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