PIA National Applauds the Passage of Bipartisan Flood
Reauthorization in House Committee

The National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA National) applauds the passage of bipartisan legislation in the House Financial Services Committee to reform the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and reauthorize it for five years. The compromise bill was released June 6 by House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Ranking Member Patrick McHenry (R-NC). The NFIP is currently slated to expire September 30, 2019 and is on its 12th short term extension since 2017.

"After nearly two years of seemingly never-ending short-term extensions, PIA National thanks Chairwoman Waters and Ranking Member McHenry for working together in a bipartisan way to pass this common-sense legislation out of the Financial Services Committee," said PIA National vice president of government relations Jon Gentile. "Their leadership has ended the treatment of the NFIP as a political hot potato, which has been unfair and even dangerous for the millions of NFIP policyholders, as well as those who have been impacted by flooding events."

The legislation recognizes and preserves the critical role of the independent agent, provides continuous coverage protections to policyholders who leave the NFIP to purchase a private flood policy and return to the program, makes important investments in mitigation, and increases funds for mapping. In addition, the bill maintains grandfathering and the gradual implementation of actuarially sound rates.

Notable for PIA members is the absence of any provision that would impede the ability of independent agents to be fairly compensated for their work on the notoriously complicated flood program. Such a provision was included in legislation that passed the House last Congress. PIA National led the effort to encourage members to leave out such a provision in the NFIP legislation passed by the committee today.


PIA Legislative Final Report

We will be sending you and updating our website as well with a final Legislative Report, but of course most of you have already read from other forms of communications that we lost the battles with our tort reform efforts and distracted driving bill. While we may have lost on that front, this fall will be another opportunity to have our voice heard. Be sure to get involved in the elections process. There will be quite a few open seats and many are termed out to run again. That means we can have some influence in who gets those seats. We have plenty of funds in our PAC account and we want to give to those who will vote favorably for our issues. Be sure to contact EVP Jody Boudreaux with anyone from your area that is running that you think we should support. We'll also be sending our a report card of how legislators voted on our issues this past Session and be sure to read it and respond by voting at the polls for those that are friendly to our industry!

U.S. Had 500 Tornadoes in 30 Days

If you've been thinking that there have been a lot of tornadoes lately, you're correct.

The U.S. Storm Prediction Center reported that the United States experienced 500 tornadoes in the past 30 days, as a trapped jet stream in the atmosphere became "stuck in neutral." In the past seven decades, only 2003, 2004, 2008, and 2011 have faced that many tornado reports in a 30-day period, said Bill Bunting, chief of forecast operations at the center. While he did not say it was unprecedented, he did say, "It certainly has been unusual."

The tornadoes have been driven by larger weather patterns that also have led to widespread rains and flooding across the Great Plains and Midwest. A low-pressure area is stuck over the Pacific Northwest, while high pressure sits on top of the southern states, allowing a stream of powerful winds to slice through the center, drawing energy from the Gulf of Mexico.

Social media has given the public the means to both record and report tornadoes like never before, and that may be one of the reasons that the most abundant years have all been within the past two decades, Bunting said.

NFIP's 2019 Hurricane Season Marketing Campaign

As part of PIA's ongoing partnership with The Hartford's flood insurance program, we are proud to provide PIA members with the latest Flood Agent eNewsletter produced by The Hartford for its flood insurance agents. This month's contents address FEMA's new hurricane season marketing campaign, October 2019 changes, and NFIP technical bulletins.

In addition to The Hartford's eNewsletters, PIA members visiting PIA's Flood Insurance Marketing Support Center can download flyers to help their personal lines and commercial lines clients prepare for floods, deal with the aftermath of flooding, and how to prepare for a visit by an adjuster. The Hartford also provides marketing materials to help your agency market flood insurance.

PIA thanks The Hartford for making these excellent materials available to all PIA members, regardless of their participation in PIA's flood insurance program with The Hartford.

PIA members who want to earn great flood insurance commissions while working with a top-flight Write-Your-Own flood insurance company should consider the PIA/Hartford flood insurance program.

To learn more about The PIA/Hartford Flood Program:

Market Access and Comparative Raters for PIA Members

PIA Market Access is a wholesale market access program that will help PIA members access over 50 nationwide and specialty personal and commercial lines markets from a number of admitted "A" or better-rated companies. Agents submitting applications through the platform can receive quotes from most of these companies through a technologically advanced personal and commercial lines rater.

If agents already have their own carrier appointments but are seeking a comparative rater, the PIA Market Access "Best of Both Worlds" Program gives agents the opportunity to rate c/l and p/l business from their existing carrier contracts and InsureZone contracts within the same platform. Agents retain 100% of commission from business written through their own agency contracts.

PIA has negotiated an exclusive low monthly rate for the use of our partner InsureZone's technology and market access. Agents who enroll in the PIA Market Access Program will receive the first two months free. Agents can expect to see competitive commission rates.

PIA members participating in the PIA Market Access Program will retain ownership of their book of business, and if they should choose to leave the program, there are no exit fees.

InsureZone is a full-service provider that is fully staffed with underwriters to answer agents' questions and make the sales process as smooth as possible. The program provides insurance CSRs to make requested policy changes and the standard of service is to begin processing all requests the same business day.

For a current list of carriers available in each state, please refer to the Carrier page at www.PIAMarketAccess.com.

PIA Market Access is available to PIA members in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Carrier availability varies by state.

Learn more about PIA Market Access: www.PIAMarketAccess.com