But Harvey-related claims covered under the Program could push it deeper into the red and possibly toward its borrowing limit of just over $30 billion, said Steve Ellis, vice president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, a nonpartisan budget watchdog in Washington, D.C.
Homebuilders, the real estate industry, and property owners in coastal communities have also long favored the program, which offers subsidized rates to many policyholders.
"It would be our hope that this storm lights a fire under Congress to make reforms to the program," said Laura Lightbody, project director for Flood preparedness at the Pew Charitable Trusts, a non-partisan public policy group.
There are about 435,000 NFIP policyholders in shoreline communities of Texas, according to a Pew analysis of flood exposure data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Many businesses and institutions have building loans and leases that require NFIP flood policies, which would not be in effect if the program lapses, said Elizabeth Guimaraes, risk management director at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
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- The US is good at responding to flood damage. We're terrible at mitigating it.Vox
- Hurricane Harvey Threatens Largest Flood Insurer: The GovernmentWall Street Journal (subscription)
- How Hurricane Harvey Could Cause Long-Term DevastationThe Atlantic
- Most Homes In Tropical Storm Harvey's Path Don't Have Flood Insurance5newsonline.com
- As waters rise in Harvey's wake, many Texans lack flood coverageDallas News
- Hurricane Harvey Recovery: Six Tips for Filing an Insurance ClaimMarkets Insider
- Get Your Due From a Homeowners or Flood Insurance ClaimConsumerReports.org