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Industry Leaders Urge Vigilance Against FIO Mission 'Creep'

The insurance industry must be vigilant as it awaits the establishment of the new Federal Insurance Office (FIO) - and particular vigilance is...
January 18, 2011

The insurance industry must be vigilant as it awaits the establishment of the new Federal Insurance Office (FIO) - and particular vigilance is needed to ensure that the FIO does not develop "mission creep." That was one thrust of comments at the Property/Casualty Joint Industry Forum in New York.

"With all of the new agencies that are springing up that are a part of this, I think it's critical for us to keep our eye on it and make sure that the scope creep doesn't start or doesn't happen," said Jack Salzwedel, president and chief operating officer of American Family Insurance. "And when you talk about FIO, and you talk about one of their mandates being to really look at whether state regulation is pertinent and is effective, you can certainly get that camel's nose under the tent very quickly there."

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner will have the authority to appoint the director of the FIO. The attitude of that individual toward state regulation will be key, said New York Insurance Commissioner James Wrynn. "Our national system of state-based regulation has worked well over the last 160 years, and I think with a director in the Federal Insurance Office that is engaged, that is working collaboratively with us, a lot can be done," said Wrynn.

Click here to read Vigilance Urged Against FIO "Mission Creep" (BestWire 1/14/11)