IIABNY Members Meet with Legislators During 34th “L-Day”

Nearly 200 agents and brokers gathered today at the State Capitol in Albany for the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of New York’s 34th Legislative Day.

During the day, agents and brokers met with legislators and their staffs to present the association’s views on a variety of issues affecting the insurance-buying public and to urge legislative action early in the current session. The Syracuse-based trade association, which represents more than 1,900 agencies and brokerages in New York, said it had “coordinated the day’s activities as part of a larger grassroots efforts seeking major and, in some cases, crucial changes to the state’s insurance market.”

It singled out the association’s opposition to a newly introduced proposal that would force all contractors employed on a public construction or other building project to purchase insurance from a single source. “Wrap-up insurance, as proposed in the Administration’s budget bill, would created major problems for independent insurance agents and their contractor clients,” said the IIABNY.

It contends that independent agents and brokers would lose their ability “to ensure that their clients in the construction industry are properly covered when they are employed on publicly funded projects in New York if wrap-up insurance is mandated.”

Other issues raised by agents and brokers included IIABNY’s support for the enactment of tough, new antifraud legislation that seeks to curb the massive level of cheating occurring in the state’s no-fault auto insurance system and reforms to the section of New York Labor Law commonly know as the “Scaffold Act” or “Ladder Law.”

Thomas A. Grau, President-elect of the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, also addressed the attendees on a variety of national issues at a morning briefing held at the Empire State Center Convention Center. According to Grau, one of the biggest challenges facing the insurance industry is the debate over federal regulation and dual charters over state regulation of insurance.

For more information on IIABNY’s legislative positions, contact the association’s legislative office at (518) 465-5340 or J.B. McCampbell at (800) 962-7950, ext. 216 or jmccampbell@iiabny.org. IIABNY’s 2004 legislative position paper can be viewed and downloaded from the association’s Web site at http://www.iiabny.org.