The National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies welcomed today’s vote by members of the House Financial Services Committee to extend the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act.
"The TRIA program has been an essential part of preserving our national economic security since it was established in the wake of the 9/11 attacks," said Jimi Grande, senior vice president of government affairs for NAMIC. "The presence of the program has ensured a competitive marketplace for commercial terrorism coverage that is needed across all industries and all areas across the country."
Following the 9/11 attacks, commercial policyholders in the U.S. were unable to obtain adequate or affordable coverage for terrorist attacks given the unique nature of the terrorism risk and the difficulty for insurers in underwriting it. The lack of available terrorism coverage ground many development projects to a halt. In response Congress established the TRIA program to help absorb the potential shock of a catastrophic attack and thereby creating much-needed stability for the marketplace.
"TRIA has been perhaps the most efficient and effective government program in our nation’s history," Grande said. "Its success can be seen in the forests of construction cranes in our cities and the thousands of jobs that development has created at no cost to the taxpayers."
The legislation approved by the committee today would extend the program for seven years beyond its current expiration at the end of 2020 and includes a study to examine the market for cyberterrorism coverage and whether and what type of cyberterrorism is currently covered under the TRIA program.
"NAMIC strongly supports the bill that passed out of committee and commends Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters and ranking member Patrick McHenry for their bipartisan leadership on the issue as well as all the members of the committee for their support," Grande said. "Unfortunately, the threat of terrorism has not gone away, and may always be with us. But today’s vote is a timely and important first step toward ensuring that the U.S. economy will continue to be protected from that threat. It is imperative that Congress not wait until next year’s deadline and instead move swiftly to send the Financial Services Committee bill to the president’s desk for signature as soon as possible."