June 3, 2013
On the heels of increasing the insolvent National Flood Insurance Program’s borrowing authority by $9.7 billion as part of the Superstorm Sandy supplemental spending package, Sen. Landrieu (D-LA) is repeating efforts to try to gut the modest reforms achieved in the reauthorization of the program not even a year ago. This time she is trying to attach the amendment to the Farm Bill (S.954 The Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2013), which is under consideration on the Senate Floor.
The federal flood insurance program, which takes in roughly $3.5 billion in premiums annually, is about $24 billion in debt to the taxpayer. That total is climbing as claims resulting from Sandy are paid out. Ultimately, the program may be in as much as $30 billion in debt to taxpayers, until the next storm hits that is. In an attempt to make the program more actuarially sound, the reform bill that passed last summer included a provision that would reduce the program subsidies by allowing rates to gradually increase to the full-risk based cost. The Landrieu amendment would delay that common sense approach for at least three years. This approach isn’t means-tested or targeted, it is a blanket subsidy extension that would continue the program’s insolvency.
It’s past time for Uncle Sam to stop encouraging people to live in harm’s way with subsidies. In the end, delaying these reforms helps no one, least of all taxpayers. For more information please contact Steve Ellis at 202-546-8500 or steve(at)taxpayer.net.
Americans for Prosperity
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Cost of Government Center
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste
National Taxpayers Union
R Street Institute
Taxpayers for Common Sense
Taxpayers Protection Alliance