The Insurance, Housing and Community Opportunity Subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Judy Biggert, will convene to receive testimony from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate on reforming the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). This is the second legislative hearing the Insurance and Housing Subcommittee has held on reforming the NFIP. The hearing will take place on Friday, April 1st at 10:30 am in room 2128 Rayburn.
Subcommittee Chairman Biggert said, "NFIP is underwater by nearly $18 billion. A fiscal disaster can't respond to a natural one. We need to put the program back on track so that it can provide reliable protection for the homes and businesses that need it -- without putting taxpayers at undue risk. Since this program was last updated in 2004, FEMA has dealt with some of America's worst flooding in history. FEMA's testimony is critical to ensuring that the program can meet the next challenge."
Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus said, "Thousands of communities and millions of property owners depend on flood insurance to provide some measure of security. To protect them while minimizing the risk to taxpayers, the NFIP must be made more self-sufficient."
The hearing is a continuation of the Subcommittee's hearing on March 11th in order to hear the views of FEMA in reforming and reauthorizing the NFIP.
The NFIP currently operates with $17.75 billion in debt. The NFIP, last reformed in 2004, has failed to charge sufficient rates to cover its risk which has resulted in significant exposure to taxpayers. The Government Accountability Office has listed the NFIP as a high-risk government program since 2006. During the hearing, the Subcommittee will review a discussion draft proposal that provides for a long-term reauthorization and important reforms to the NFIP that would improve its financial stability, reduce the burden on taxpayers, and examine ways to increase private market participation.