Today, U.S. Senator Jerry Moran's (R-Kan.) legislative effort to provide financial relief to homeowners in Kansas and across the country passed the Senate as an amendment to S.1940, the five year reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which was passed as part of H.R. 4348, the Highway Bill Conference Report. Sen. Moran's amendment will allow homeowners living behind a levee to pay the lowest possible rate for their flood insurance while that levee is in the final stages of improvement. The inclusion of the Moran Amendment in S.1940 provided a solution to one of the key points of contention; the lack of a compromise on what to do with levees undergoing reconstruction. This question had been a major road-block to reauthorization, delaying this bill for many years.
"I'm pleased the Senate was able to move past the obstacles and pass this important legislation to improve the National Flood Insurance Program," Sen. Moran said. "With fewer federal dollars available, levee upkeep has become very much a local effort, and communities are digging deep to find the resources necessary to rehabilitate their aging flood protection systems. My amendment recognizes those communities who are making significant progress toward improving their levees and lowers the insurance rates for citizens living within that flood plain."
The Moran Amendment provides meaningful financial relief while ensuring that needed levee improvements are made to protect life and property. While many factors affect the calculation of flood insurance premiums, the passage of Sen. Moran's amendment could save residents of eligible communities hundreds of dollars per year. The insurance premiums for property owners behind levees undergoing improvement would reflect the insurance premiums available when the levee improvement was complete and fully certified.
The language was originally adopted by the Senate Banking Committee as an amendment to S.1940 in September 2011.