Last night Congress passed the Grimm-Cassidy Amendment to the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (H.R. 3370). Before the vote we spoke with Congressman Bill Cassidy so he could give us more insight about the amendment.

According to Cassidy,

We've been working on this since October when folks back home began to say 'you got to be kidding this thing is a mess'...At first it was just Louisiana then it became the Gulf coast and after (Hurricane) Sandy it was the Northeast. So there is a nationwide coalition that wants to put the program on a firm financial foundation but to make sure the individual homeowner is not priced out of the ability to own a home.

When is asked if the premium increases would be incremental Cassidy said,

There was a letter to the editor of the Wall Street Journal today somebody said in Florida his premiums went from $700 to $7,000 in one year...Phenomenal increases on people who in Louisiana at least are mostly middle income people.

Congressman Cassidy pointed out that this amendment will affect only the National Flood Insurance program and not insurance companies. Cassidy explained the reasoning behind the rate increases,

They say up until (Hurricane) Katrina their income roughly balanced to what they paid out. After Katrina the program went upside down to the tune of $20 billion and Hurricane Sandy only made it worse.

 

The Grimm-Cassidy amendment now goes to the Senate for a vote.

To learn more about the Grimm-Cassidy amendment take a listen to the entire interview by clicking the blue arrow below: