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Manchin shows support for flood insurance act

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U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said Wednesday he supports the "Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act" to protect homeowners from paying drastically higher flood insurance costs.

The act is under the revised version of the National Flood Insurance Program. 

This legislation, cosponsored by 28 additional senators, would delay changes to the insurance program overseen by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) until the agency can finish an affordability study required by the "Biggert-Waters Act." 

It would also provide Congress 18 months to review any new regulations FEMA may propose once the study is complete.

"It is simply unconscionable to ask thousands of West Virginia homeowners to make excessive flood insurance payments because of the unintentional consequences of the recently enacted Biggert-Waters Act," Manchin said. "I've heard many concerns from West Virginians that these rate increases could rise in some cases to be more costly than homeowners' mortgage payments. That is simply unacceptable, especially at a time when our economy and housing market are still only slowly recovering.

"I am hopeful that the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act will provide much needed relief to West Virginians and provide Congress with enough time to review the affordability study, and create a more permanent fix to the National Flood Insurance Program that doesn't require hardworking West Virginians who live within their means to make excessive payments they can't afford."

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