Backers hope Senate will take up bill to delay flood insurance premium increases

Posted by Renee Schoof on January 8, 2014 

U.S. senators backing legislation that would delay flood insurance premium increases for homeowners are hoping that the bill will get a vote on the Senate floor next week.

There had been talk about a possible vote this week, but the Senate is tied up now with a debate over whether to extend the federal emergency jobless benefits.

Sen. Kay Hagan is one of the 20 Democratic senators who have signed on as co-sponsors of the flood insurance bill. There also are eight Republican co-sponsors, including Sens. Tim Scott and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.

Some of the supporters held a press conference on Tuesday at the Capitol to try to drum up support. The legislation would delay premium increases for homeowners. The increases are the result of a 2012 law that was meant to stabilize the financially insolvent Federal Flood Insurance Program.

Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., the main sponsor of the proposed bill, said “most costly subsidies will continue to be phased out, but our bill provides protections to primary homeowners and prevents property values from declining.”

It would delay the premium increases for homeowners until the Federal Emergency Management Agency completes an affordability study.

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