TRIA Extension Headed for Obama's Signature After Senate Passage

The U.S. Senate passed the “Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2015” (H.R. 26) on Jan. 8 by a vote of 93-4. Following passage of the bill in the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 416-5 on Jan. 7, the Senate vote clears the way for President Obama to sign the bill into law and reauthorize the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) through 2020.

“NAREIT commends the efforts of Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), Banking Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL), Banking Committee Ranking Member Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Banking Committee members Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in making TRIA reauthorization an immediate priority for the Senate in the new Congress,” NAREIT President & CEO Steve Wechsler said. “Each of them expressed a desire to reauthorize this important program as soon as possible in 2015, providing stability in the terrorism insurance marketplace and American economy.”

Marty DePoy, spokesman for the Coalition to Insure Against Terrorism (CIAT), noted that the House and Senate passed the TRIA reauthorization bill within two days of the 114th Congress taking office on Jan. 6. “CIAT members are pleased the Senate has acted quickly to approve TRIA reauthorization as one of the first orders of business in the new Congress,” he said.

“Passing a bill to reauthorize TRIA was one of the first actions taken by the 114th Congress, and we look to President Obama to sign the bill into law with similar expediency,” Wechsler said.

TRIA was first signed into law in 2002 after reinsurers and primary insurers exited the market for terrorism risk coverage after paying out more than $30 billion in claims following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The absence of this coverage stalled business activity and resulted in massive job losses. TRIA’s federal backstop enabled the private insurance market to function again, restoring the availability of terrorism risk insurance at no cost to taxpayers. TRIA was reauthorized twice and expired at the end of 2014.