National Flood Insurance Program extended
Congress renewed the National Flood Insurance Program with a bill that extended several programs, including unemployment benefits.
The program is available through May 31, pending a more permanent solution. While the insurance program was inactive, countless home sales were on hold. A prospective buyer of a residence in a flood zone must have flood insurance to close on the sale.
Both chambers of Congress quickly passed the bill Thursday, and President Obama signed it later that night. Most Republicans voted against it, citing the $18 billion cost.
Aside from extending jobless benefits, the bill also continued health insurance subsidies for unemployed people through the Cobra program and provided money through May to avert a 21% decrease in payments to doctors who see Medicare patients.
Democrats will continue pursuing a year-long extension for jobless benefits.