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NM House Advances Bill to Create Independent Insurance Department

The New Mexico House of Representatives has unanimously approved legislation that would create a stand-alone insurance department...
March 8, 2013

The New Mexico House of Representatives has unanimously approved legislation that would create a stand-alone insurance department. The bill would implement a voter-approved constitutional amendment that removes New Mexico’s insurance regulator from the Public Regulation Commission’s supervision. The bill, HB 45, now goes to the Senate. HB 45 would establish an independent insurance department that would not be under the jurisdiction of the five-member Public Regulation Commission (PRC). A.M. Best reports that the move to create an independent insurance department comes after years of controversy involving the PRC and its relationship with top insurance regulators. At one point in 2010, there were four insurance superintendents in the span of six weeks.

In January, the commission drew fire from a lawyer for New Mexico Insurance Superintendent John Franchini after Franchini was slapped with a 10-day unpaid suspension. The suspension allegedly came as a result of Franchini’s decision to let department employees leave an hour early on Christmas Eve.

NM House Advances Bill to Create Ins. Department (BestWire 3/1/13) (subscription)

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