Information on Proposed Changes to the National Flood Insurance Program

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Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created in 1968 and currently has more than 5.6 million policyholders that are insured for about $1.1 trillion. The program collects about $2.9 billion in annual premiums. As of January 2009, NFIP owed approximately $19.2 billion to the U.S. Treasury, primarily as a result of loans that the program received to pay claims from the 2005 hurricane season. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which administers the program, this debt is greater ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. February 27, 2009.

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Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created in 1968 and currently has more than 5.6 million policyholders that are insured for about $1.1 trillion. The program collects about $2.9 billion in annual premiums. As of January 2009, NFIP owed approximately $19.2 billion to the U.S. Treasury, primarily as a result of loans that the program received to pay claims from the 2005 hurricane season. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which administers the program, this debt is greater than the sum of all previous losses since the program's inception in 1968. While FEMA officials told us that interest payments are estimated to be lower in 2010, as of October 2008, NFIP owed interest payments of $730 million a year to Treasury and has had to borrow more from the Treasury to make these payments. As a result, it is unlikely that NFIP will ever be able to repay the entire debt. Because of NFIP's financial situation, in 2006 GAO placed the program on the high-risk list. In 2008, GAO issued three reports covering issues directly related to NFIP. NFIP is subject to periodic reauthorization and its current authorization has been extended until March 2009. As Congress considers reauthorization of NFIP and potential reforms to the program, Congress asked us to provide a briefing on (1) the percentage and geographic distribution of policyholders that purchase the maximum NFIP coverage, (2) the availability of private commercial and residential flood insurance, (3) the potential effect of adding business interruption coverage to commercial flood insurance, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses, and (4) the challenges and issues surrounding the potential creation of an NFIP loss fund."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • February 27, 2009

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Information on Proposed Changes to the National Flood Insurance Program, text, February 27, 2009; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc301598/: accessed September 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.