The Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012, signed into law last year, was designed to provide relief to taxpayers, already burdened with $17 trillion in debt, by enacting commonsense reforms to the flawed National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and transitioning flood insurance to the private sector. The law phases out flood insurance subsidies and sets premium rates to be paid by property owners that reflect the actual risk of flood damage.
A transition to the private sector is essential for the protection of taxpayers. Flood insurance payouts have meant huge financial losses for the NFIP, which means Congress has had to borrow huge amounts of additional money from the U.S. Treasury. Indeed, as of September 30, 2013, the NFIP owed the U.S. Treasury $24 billion.
“It looks like a hold-your-nose, vote-yes kind of vote for me. There are other things I don’t like, but the trade-off is, we do for the first time bite into sequestration,” said Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-VA) 10%.
This remark gets to the heart of the budget agreement reached by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) N/A% and Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) 7%. Some lawmakers have been eager to undo sequestration, an imperfect but effective tool at cutting spending, and this budget deal is their opportunity.
This week, the House is expected to vote on the Kids First Research Act (H.R. 2019), which would eliminate taxpayer financing of party conventions and reprogram savings to a 10-year pediatric research initiative via the National Institutes of Health (NIH). While no one questions the intent, these funds would be best used for deficit reduction, not the creation of a new program.
House and Senate budget negotiators are nearing an agreement on a budget deal, but it may prove to be one that is not agreeable to conservatives or to the taxpayers footing the bill for out-of-control government spending.
The 2011 Budget Control Act (BCA), though imperfect, was effective in cutting discretionary spending, and a budget that breaks the caps set by it is unacceptable. Yet, there is mounting pressure from appropriators to replace part of automatic spending cuts put in place by the BCA. Meanwhile, many Democrats are seeking to reverse the sequester on their “favored domestic programs,” like transportation, housing and the ineffective Head Start program.
President Obama made remarks on the economy Wednesday, lamenting inequality in America. Of course, he blames everyone but himself and the big government he promotes for the state of things.