On the one year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, Oregon's Senator Jeff Merkley and a bipartisan coalition of Senators introduced the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act which will protect thousands of Oregon homeowners from facing huge flood insurance premium rate hikes and require FEMA to complete an affordability study and propose real solutions to address affordability issues before any flood insurance premiums can be raised in the future.
"Something is very wrong when middle class families across Oregon and America are more worried about extreme spikes in flood insurance than about actual floods. This must be remedied," said Merkley. "We can strengthen the long-term health of the program without pricing families out of their homes. I am pleased that last month's hearing helped mobilize a bipartisan coalition committed to giving homeowners relief."
In September, Merkley chaired a hearing in his Economic Policy subcommittee on flood insurance rate spikes and possible solutions. He then assembled a bipartisan working group of Senators concerned about the problems, which led to the legislation.
The bill is co-sponsored by Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), David Vitter (R-LA), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Bill Nelson (R-FL), Mark Begich (D-AK), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), John Hoeven (R-ND), Al Franken (D-MN), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) and Ed Markey (D-MA). Congresswoman Maxine Waters, along with Congressmen Michael Grimm, Cedric Richmond and 34 others are introducing a companion bill in the House of Representatives.