The ride to Capitol Hill

Do you know what is going on in your state legislatively? Are you aware how it impact’s your agency or company’s bottom line? What about nationally? What is the impact of legislation on your business and on your clients?

Come along for the ride as we talk about the importance of being involved legislatively in our industry.

On March 31, 2011 I will be on Capitol Hill talking to members of the House and Senate about issues that impact our industry. Every year, PIA National holds its Federal Legislative Summit (FLS) and members from affiliates around the country converge on DC to talk shop.

This year some of the major issues we will be talking about are:

  • Health Insurance and the agent’s role including support of legislation, H.R. 1206, that will protect agent compensation. We will also opposition to taxing employer-provided health care benefits and will be looking to address long-term cost controls.
  • The NFIP. PIA supports reforming and modernizing of the NFIP and concerned that privatizing the program will not sufficiently serve our insureds. Also PIA strongly opposes the addition of Windstorm to the NFIP or any other natural catastrophe coverage.
  • State regulation of insurance is always an issue near and dear to many of our hearts. We will discuss how PIA opposes pre-emption by a federal insurance regulator. PIA also opposes any expansion of the Federal Insurance Office’s responsibilities or authority.
  • While on the hill we will also be discussing how PIA opposes any effort to alter the McCarran-Ferguson antitrust law, particularly for property-casualty insurers.

How do these issues impact your agency? How do they impact your client? What are you doing to make sure the the political climate best serves our industry and policyholders alike?

Get involved. Find an association that you believe in and do everything you can to get involved legislatively. You can find information on these insurance industry associations easily enough on the web.

Participate in industry Grass-root campaigns in your state. The legislators in your state know you. They see you around town. Talk to your representatives about how these issues impact our industry, the economy and their constituents! Ask associations like PIA for letters that you can easily sign and email or bring to your representatives.

Find out the issues in your state. Is it Crop Insurance? Coastal availability? Hurrican/windstorm triggers? What about regulation aimed at our commissions and livelihood?

Figure out what the issues are in your state that impact your business and your policyholders and get involved – write a letter – make a call.

We cannot sit back and complain if we do not want to look for ways to make change.

Follow my tweets for information on my own meetings throughout the day Thursday @Mschiplee.

I hope you will follow my ride through DC for the PIA National Federal Legislative Summit as I represent PIANY members. If you want more information on getting involved with groups like PIA you can Google ‘National Insurance Agent Associations’. See what comes up in your area!

Join me on this ride – go out there and get involved!

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