Texas Border Business
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-34) and Congressman Andrew R. Garbarino (NY-02) led a bipartisan letter to Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Deanne Criswell requesting an update on FEMA’s implementation of an installment payment system to allow all National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policyholders to pay premiums in monthly installments instead of on an annual basis.
“As you know, flood insurance is an essential tool for homeowners, renters, and communities to proactively protect against flooding. Those with flood insurance are able to recover quicker and more comprehensively in the wake of a flood, making flood insurance a commonsense financial choice,” the Members wrote.
“A simple step toward ensuring broader flood insurance affordability would be to allow premiums to be paid in monthly installments, rather than on an annual basis…FEMA’s implementation of an installment payment system is long overdue, and we seek to understand what has contributed to the delays in carrying out this statutory directive,” the Members continued.
The letter points to the fact that, in its 2021 annual report, the Office of the Flood Insurance Advocate recommended that FEMA offer monthly premium payment options as a step towards potential relief from affordability challenges. Additionally, the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 required FEMA to provide policyholders with the option of paying premiums annually or monthly.
The Members requested responses to several questions including what FEMA’s plan is to implement the statutory directive to provide policyholders with the option of paying their NFIP premiums monthly, what FEMA’s timeline is to implement the statutory directive, what factors have contributed to delays in carrying out this statutory directive, what additional resources are needed for FEMA to implement this statutory directive, and what other barriers are preventing FEMA from implementing this statutory directive.
In addition to the co-leads, 20 bipartisan Members signed the letter including Representatives Chris Smith (NJ-04), Nicole Malliotakis (NY-11), Mike Lawler (NY-17), Mike Ezell (MS-04), Randy Weber (TX-14), Nick LaLota (NY-1), Monica De La Cruz (TX-15), Marc Molinaro (NY-19), Anthony D’Esposito (NY-04), Jerry Carl (AL-01), John Joyce (PA-13), Maria Salazar (FL-27), Russell Fry (SC-07), Nick Langworthy (NY-23), John Rutherford (FL-05), Jim Himes (CT-04), Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05), Troy Carter (GA-01), David Trone (MD-06), and Lizzie Fletcher (TX-07).
The full text of the letter can be found here.