WASHINGTON (May 21, 2010) The National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC) responded today to Senate passage of S. 3217, the Restoring American Stability Act of 2010.
“It’s been a long journey since work began on the Wall Street reform bill, and from the beginning NAMIC has supported financial reforms targeted at the causes of the financial crisis,” said Jimi Grande, senior vice president of federal and political affairs for NAMIC. “The final product of the Senate is not a perfect bill, but it is one that for the most part recognizes the unique nature of property/casualty insurance and respects the state-based system of insurance regulation.”
When S. 3217 was initially introduced, NAMIC had significant concerns that some provisions would burden insurers with duplicative regulation, and ultimately harm consumers. As the process continued, most of these concerns were addressed.
“Initially, this bill contained a number of troubling provisions for the property/casualty insurance industry,” said Grande. “However, in the almost 20 months since the financial crisis began, the Senate has seen the wisdom of respecting the state regulatory system of solvency and consumer protection. They correctly saw that there is no need for a new duplicative federal bureaucracy and instead crafted a small Office of National Insurance, not intended to be a regulatory authority, but to serve as a source of information and expertise.”
With the passage of S. 3217 last night, the bill will now be the subject of a conference between members of the House and Senate to reach consensus on several differences between their reform bills.
“It’s an important step for the Senate to have passed the bill, but the journey is by no means over,” Grande said. “There are significant differences between this bill and the version passed by the House last year that will have to be resolved. We will remain vigilant to prevent any harmful provisions from being added to the final bill.”
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