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NAIC President Mike Pickens Highlights Priorities for 2003

Larry H. Mirel, Commissioner of the District of Columbia Department of Insurance and Securities Regulation, hosted an informal get-together with NAIC President Mike Pickens (AR),...
March 4, 2003

Larry H. Mirel, Commissioner of the District of Columbia Department of Insurance and Securities Regulation, hosted an informal get-together with NAIC President Mike Pickens (AR), NAIC Secretary/Treasurer Joel Ario (OR) and various industry representatives during the NAIC symposium. Ellen Sanders represented PIA.

Pickens announced that the NAIC will continue to push for modernization. Top priorities for 2003 in this area include the following:

  1. Producer licensing: Continue efforts toward uniformity.
  2. Speed to Market, including Interstate Compact, and
  3. Market Conduct: coordinating reviews among the states to reduce repetitiveness and burden on carriers.

Maintaining state regulation of insurance remains a high priority. Therefore, President Pickens has formed a Government Affairs task force that will report directly to the NAIC Executive Committee. It will be co-chaired by Terri Vaughan (Iowa commissioner and immediate past NAIC President) and Mike Kreidler (WA). This task force consolidates several other task forces (such as the Coordination with Federal Regulators task force and the State Legislative Liaison Committee) and raises its importance and influence. This task force also includes those NAIC representatives that are coordinating with the U.S. Treasury on coordination of TRIA implementation and anti-money laundering regulations.

Adoption of the Interstate Compact by state legislatures remains a priority. Many legislators, regulators and interested parties that have been skeptical about the compact have indicated that they will reserve final judgment until the national standards are developed. That's why a new National Product Standards task force has been formed that will report directly to the NAIC Executive Committee. Membership on the task force will mirror how the management committee would be composed once the compact is in place.

Mirel announced that the NAIC is considering a proposal to conduct a comprehensive survey of large national carriers to ascertain their compliance with Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act privacy requirements. The carriers' practices, and not just their policies, would be examined. Several states previously indicated that they will conduct their own in-state surveys. Mirel's proposal is an effort to cut back on overlapping surveys without removing the sovereignty of the states. Also, it could avert the costs of duplicative surveys by individual states. At this time there is no plan to survey producers.

Mirel will chair a new working group on class action lawsuits. Its tentative charges include development of a white paper of the impact of class actions on state regulatory authority and suggest some guiding principles.

These and other topics will be discussed in greater detail at the upcoming NAIC quarterly meeting in Atlanta, March 8-11, 2003.