The National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC) on Wednesday offered a set of reform proposals for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) designed to improve the program’s financial standing while ensuring protections for homeowners and businesses.
“NAMIC believes that the NFIP fulfills an important role for protecting citizens from financial losses due to flood,” the group said in comments submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which oversees the NFIP. “The existing structure provides a strong foundation on which to build the program into one that maximizes this role, is viable, and is financially sustainable.”
NAMIC outlined a series of steps that could be taken to improve the program, including long term reauthorization, the implementation of actuarially sound rates with direct subsidies for those unable to afford coverage, the use of updated flood zone maps and the forgiveness of the NFIP’s debts from the 2005 storm season.
“The NFIP is in need of significant reforms in order to continue providing flood protection to those that need it,” NAMIC said, urging FEMA to adopt the proposals to “optimize” the NFIP. “NAMIC believes that optimization is the best way to balance all the goals of the reform effort: fiscal soundness, affordability of insurance, adequate coverage for those at risk, floodplain management with reduction of flood hazard vulnerability, economic development, individual freedoms, and environmental concerns.”