New Mexico's two U.S. senators are pushing legislation that would make it easier for residents affected by wildfires on federal lands to take advantage of flood insurance administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Senator Jeff Bingaman introduced the measure last week. Senator Tom Udall is a co-sponsor.
Under current law, there's a 30-day waiting period after flood insurance is purchased before coverage under a new contract can take effect. The legislation would waive the waiting period in instances where fire creates or exacerbates a new flooding problem in areas where flooding would otherwise not be considered a significant threat.
Bingaman says the monsoon season is approaching and he wants to make sure residents have adequate flood protection. Bingaman and Udall plan to press for an immediate vote on the bill.