WASHINGTON (7/19/10)—Congresswomen Maxine Water’s (D-Calif) legislation about ways to improve the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was passed last week by the U.S. House. The bill reauthorizes the program for another five years, to Sept. 30, 2015, and improves the program by adding a Flood Insurance Advocate and also raising the maximum coverage limits. Waters said of her bill, “This legislation restores stability to NFIP, which it lacked while subject to lapses and only temporary extensions. During lapses in the flood insurance program over the past year, FEMA was not able to write new policies, renew expiring ones or increase coverage limits.” It was passed 329-90. Last month both the House and Senate passed legislation (H.R. 5569) to extend NFIP until Sept. 30, which was the most recent of several short-term extensions and which followed a one-month lapse of program authority during which new policies were not issued. Waters, in a press release, said the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies estimated that 1200 homebuyers a day were unable to close on their homes while NFIP program was suspended. Next week the House is scheduled to take up H.R. 1264, the Multiple Peril Insurance Act of 2009. It amends the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968 to require the national flood insurance program to enable the purchase of multi-peril coverage and optional separate windstorm coverage.