Additional Reforms Encouraged to Promote Community Resilience, Protect Wildlife Habitat
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Reforms the U.S. House Committee on Financial Services advanced today as part of its reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program will help improve community resilience in the face of hurricanes, severe weather and perennial flooding. As the legislation moves through the process, the National Wildlife Federation encouraged Congress to explore additional ways to promote nature-based flood mitigation, discourage risky new construction in flood-prone areas and wildlife habitat, and support disclosure for all policy holders of insurance rates that reflect the actual risk to communities.
“We applaud the Committee for striving to stop the chain of short-term extensions, and moving forward with a long overdue full reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program,” said Jessie Ritter, director of water resources and coastal policy at the National Wildlife Federation. “The Committee’s bill contains a series of important reforms to improve program mapping, increase options for mitigation, and address affordability concerns. As this legislation moves through the process, we look forward to working with the Committee and their U.S. Senate counterparts to advance measures to promote nature-based, community wide mitigation, and increase rate transparency for all policy holders.”
The National Wildlife Federation and its allies have repeatedly urged lawmakers to modernize the National Flood Insurance Program. National Wildlife Federation President and CEO Collin O'Mara recently testified before the House Financial Services Committee on how to reform the National Flood Insurance Program and published a related national opinion piece.
The National Flood Insurance Program is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and provides insurance coverage for more than 5 million American properties, as well as a structure to improve floodplain management and to develop maps of flood hazard zones. Critical reforms are needed to modernize the program, including improved mapping to discourage construction in flood-prone areas; supporting insurance rates that reflect actual risk to homes and businesses; providing means-tested assistance for those who cannot afford risk-based insurance rates; and investing in and encouraging community-wide, nature-based mitigation.
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