New York Senator Chuck Schumer was on Long Island Monday advocating for Congress to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program, which he calls a much needed safety net.
Congress has needed to reauthorize the flood program for nearly a year now. The new deadline is in July. But critics say the program doesn’t accurately price in the true cost of living in a flood prone area.
Chad McGuire, a professor of public policy at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, says, “I think a lot of the consternation that’s happening on the Hill is, this doesn’t seem like a sustainable program. So what is our federal government doing to identifying storm surges and what are considered the more dangerous places, and are we charging appropriate rates.”
House Republicans passed a reauthorization bill last fall that included more accurate flood maps. Their bill also raises rates and encourages more private insurance companies into the market. Democrats complain that it pushes the cost onto the middle class and discourages them from buying flood insurance. Key Republican lawmakers in the Senate have not yet said what their proposal will entail.