Congress eyes $16 billion in debt relief for National Flood Insurance Program, without strings attached
A multi-part package of federal hurricane relief money hitting Congress this week will wipe away $16 billion in National Flood Insurance Program debt but won't include a number of changes to the program requested by the White House.
The debt relief will free up money to pay an avalanche of claims from NFIP policyholders in the wake of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate without ballooning interest payments owed by the program. The federally run program has eaten through its cash reserves and nearly exhausted its current authority to borrow more from the U.S. Treasury to pay flooded policyholders, leaving it in danger of running out of money.
Louisiana's congressional delegation welcomed the debt relief, a measure a number of Louisiana leaders have lobbied for but had seen only limited support in Washington until now. The bill also includes about $20 billion in other federal disaster funding, most of it for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, to respond to a series of natural disasters in recent months.
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