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PIA National President Auerbach to Address NCOIL Meeting This Week

PIA National President Kenneth R. Auerbach, Esq. will address insurance lawmakers from around the nation who will gather this week in Florida for the annual...
November 18, 2008

PIA National President Kenneth R. Auerbach, Esq. will address insurance lawmakers from around the nation who will gather this week in Florida for the annual meeting of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL). Auerbach will address the legislators on behalf of PIA and reiterate his pledge to continue working closely with them to modernize the state insurance regulatory system, telling them they can count on PIA for support of needed reforms in their state.

Auerbach will report on recent achievements in state regulation, and PIA's support for needed changes. PIA National and our affiliates will be working with the NAIC over the next several months as part of a nationwide effort to modernize producer licensing and we need the participation of the legislators in this nationwide effort.

PIA is prepared to assist our departments in getting the proper legislation adopted quickly. Most states have adopted the NAIC Producer Licensing Model Act, but some states have changed the model in such a way that unnecessarily drives up costs without enhancing consumer protections.  All jurisdictions must adopt the Producer Licensing Model Act and interpret it in a uniform manner. We want to achieve most of our modernization goals through enhanced technology, such as NIPR. We would like to see all states utilizing all NIPR products to help streamline the licensing process and allowing departments to focus on other areas, such as anti-fraud and enhanced consumer protection efforts.

During this process, we will be working with our legislators and regulators through our affiliates, to identify uniformity standards where states still need to achieve full compliance.

Also at the NCOIL meeting:

On November 20, the NCOIL Subcommittee on Natural Disaster Insurance Legislation will meet to discuss pending state and federal initiatives, interstate natural catastrophe compacts and tax incentives for catastrophe savings accounts. PIA has filed comments.

On November 21, the NCOIL Property-Casualty Insurance Committee will meet to receive an update on the National Flood Insurance Program.  The legislators are planning to discuss the NAIC Climate Change Disclosure Plan and Crop Insurance Reforms Regarding Rebating, Funding and Subsidies.

On November 21, the NCOIL State-Federal Relations Committee will consider a Resolution Concerning the Recent Use of Legal Settlements as Public Policymaking Instruments in the Insurance Arena, sponsored by Rep. Greg Wren (AL) and Rep. Rich Golick (GA).  The resolution, among other things, expresses concern regarding the public policy implications of certain legal settlements with insurers and reaffirms the authority of state legislators to set insurance public policy.  The Committee will also consider a friendly amendment, sponsored by Rep. Craig Eiland (TX), in the form of a substitute resolution.  PIA supports this amendment and urges passage of this resolution to preserve the authority of state legislatures. 

The NCOIL state insurance legislators will also consider ways to turn around the ailing economy and to map out a regulatory structure for the future. Legislators and other financial authorities will meet on November 22 at a blue-ribbon panel entitled U.S. In Financial Crisis: Where Do We Go From Here?

"Congress would be best served to look to the state-regulated AIG insurance sectors that held strong rather than to the federally regulated divisions that led to our present crisis on Wall Street. We at NCOIL plan to encourage use of the states' effective mitigation efforts and discourage adding more bureaucracy to a federal system that in large part served as a breeding ground that produced the current crisis," said NCOIL President Brian Patrick Kennedy, a Democratic state representative from Rhode Island.

On November 21, an NCOIL-NAIC Dialogue is scheduled. One issue bound to come up is the NAIC's proposed Market Conduct Annual Statement plan. Under a transitional plan approved by the NAIC membership in September, 29 states would start reporting company data to a central repository at the NAIC, which, over the next year, would begin to aggregate and analyze the data, develop technological tools for that purpose and assess state-by-state differences in confidential disclosure laws. NCOIL already has filed objections to the plan, which members believe oversteps state insurance departments' statutory authority.