Members of the PIA of North Carolina held meetings this week with their congressional delegation as part of PIA’s 2022 Advocacy Days. In their meetings, the PIA of North Carolina highlighted the importance of the state insurance regulatory system and urged their elected representatives to cosponsor legislation to repeal the Federal Insurance Office (FIO).
PIA supports legislation sponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Reps. Ben Cline (R-VA) and Tom Tiffany (R-WI) to repeal the FIO (S. 524/H.R. 4866). The FIO was created by the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and is an ongoing threat to the successful state insurance regulatory system.
PIA members noted that a state regulator is far better positioned to protect consumers and respond to the insurance industry than any office in Washington, DC. They explained that as long as the FIO exists, it is likely to grow in power and responsibility, presenting a direct threat to the state insurance regulatory system. For instance, in 2017, the House passed a bill that would have created a new office of the “independent insurance advocate,” which would have substantially increased the size and scope of the FIO by permitting it to hire an expansive professional staff, giving it a Senate-confirmable director, allowing it to issue regulations, and granting it a line item in the federal budget. Thankfully, the bill never advanced in the Senate, but its House passage serves as a warning sign that, if Congress allows the FIO to continue to exist, it will inevitably increase in size and power and usurp the state insurance regulatory system.
The PIA North Carolina also raised the importance of a long-term reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in their meetings. They also discussed the ongoing implementation of the new NFIP rating system, Risk Rating 2.0.
Their efforts this week were part of PIA’s 2022 series of year-round, state-specific advocacy events that offer agents the chance to meet with federal policymakers on the issues that matter most to them. Throughout the year, PIA members from across the country will spend their Advocacy Days engaging with lawmakers on PIA’s current Issues of Focus.