Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty touted the need for a comprehensive national plan, and a national catastrophe fund at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) Southeast Zone meeting in Mobile, Ala., Monday.
Although the focus of the meeting was the affordability and availability of property insurance, McCarty’s opening remarks encompassed a wide range of catastrophe issues including the National Flood Insurance Program and the California Earthquake Authority.
As NAIC Southeast Zone Chairman, McCarty co-hosted the event with Alabama Insurance Commissioner and NAIC President Walter Bell addressing fellow regulators, congressional leaders, members of the insurance industry and the media: “The United States remains one of the few industrialized countries without a national catastrophe plan,” he said. “The interest expressed today by regulators from other states shows that hurricanes and other catastrophic events are not a Florida problem – they are a national problem that requires a national solution.”
Commissioners from Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina also were in attendance.
President Bell expressed a need for urgency in the Gulf Coast’s lingering insurance issues and asked carriers to provide resolution.
“There are pressing needs in the Gulf states. Rates are rising and many consumers are having their policies canceled or nonrenewed,” Bell said. “Our goals are to seek input from companies on their plans to promote affordability and availability of insurance for America’s consumers – as well as bring stability to the coastal insurance market.”
U.S. Rep. Jo Bonner, R-Ala., and U.S. Rep. Tim Mahoney R-Fla., and members of the industry also offered testimony to a crowd of nearly 100 at the four-hour public meeting at the Battle House Renaissance Hotel in downtown Mobile.
Sources: Florida Office of Insurance Regulation
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