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CSFI Hosts Senator Cassidy to Review Risk Rating 2.0 and Preview NFIP Reauthorization Legislation

Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) met with CSFI and CSFI members in person on May 23.   The meeting occurred in New Orleans and underscored NFIP reform priorities, while sharing technical concerns around Risk Rating 2.0, which are affecting full-risk premium calculations nationally.

Senator Cassidy spoke to the impact of Risk Rating 2.0 on national economic centers, saying that, “The high cost of flood insurance hurts everyone, but especially working families along our coast. This is a human problem, not just an actuarial one. We need to pass legislation that keeps rates low and FEMA accountable.”

Senator Cassidy plans to soon introduce a new version of his NFIP Reauthorization and Reform Act (NFIP-RE Act), with Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ).  The NFIP-RE Act intends to improve the accountability, affordability, and sustainability of the NFIP.  It’s expected that the NFIP-RE Act will also lower annual increase caps, to mitigate drastically increasing flood insurance premiums.  41 of 50 states – well beyond Louisiana – will see increases in NFIP premiums by 50% due to Risk Rating 2.0.

CSFI commented in support of Senator Cassidy’s longstanding efforts to rein in Risk Rating 2.0’s impacts and provide for a sustainable flood insurance program:

“The Coalition for Sustainable Flood Insurance commends Senator Cassidy for confronting Risk Rating 2.0’s burden on Louisianans, as well as communities and economies across the country. Senator Cassidy is a consistent champion of smart, sensible NFIP reauthorization with reform. Now, with Risk Rating 2.0’s consequences being more widely appreciated, CSFI and Senator Cassidy agree that NFIP reauthorization must occur urgently and concurrently with reform. Reform should prioritize transparency provisions – like a public-facing rate calculator and an appeals process – and affordability provisions – like a means-tested program and debt forbearance. Furthermore, considering Senator Cassidy’s leadership in infrastructure investment, it’s critical that authorized projects and programs are properly reflected in Risk Rating 2.0. The methodology should appropriately respect public and private investments that further mitigation, from home elevations to flood protection.”