FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ICBA Pleased with Strong Senate Vote Passing Bill to Delay Sharp Flood Insurance Rate Hikes
Washington, D.C. (Jan. 31, 2014)—The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) today said it is pleased the Senate passed bipartisan legislation to protect homeowners from significant increases in flood insurance premiums, which began being phased in on Oct. 1.
S. 1926, introduced by Sens. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), would delay steep rate increases for up to four years by giving the Federal Emergency Management Agency time to develop a plan to help property owners who cannot afford higher premiums. ICBA thanks all the senators whose tireless efforts brought this bill to the floor with a solid bipartisan vote.
“ICBA is very pleased the Senate has acted to protect homeowners and communities nationwide from much higher National Flood Insurance Program premiums,” ICBA President and CEO Camden R. Fine said. “Giving FEMA more time to investigate the potential impact of these dramatic premium increases on millions of Americans will help alleviate the negative unintended consequences of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012. ICBA and community bankers everywhere urge the House to take up this legislation to delay the devastating rate increases.”
Unless the law changes, sharp flood insurance rate hikes under the Biggert-Waters Act would make flood insurance unaffordable for many policyholders who built to code and followed the law every step of the way. These increases would negatively affect home values and destabilize the still-recovering housing market in affected areas.
ICBA worked closely with the Senate and looks forward to working closely with the House to mitigate these dramatic rate increases and implement a comprehensive fix. Community bankers nationwide continue urging their lawmakers to act promptly to resolve this issue.
For more information, visit www.icba.org.
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for nearly 7,000 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services.