PIA Releases 2023 Policy Priorities

The PIA Government Relations staff has reviewed PIA’s past policy positions and Congress’s current priorities, and, in consultation with PIA members across the country, we have developed our 2023 Policy Priorities. While the items below are our top priorities for this year, PIA is always working to promote the interests of our independent agent members, wherever those interests take us. Click here for a document of the below Policy Priorities.

Crop Insurance: PIA supports the federal crop insurance program, which is a highly technical program that relies on the expertise of independent insurance agents. The program requires private-sector insurance carriers to offer crop insurance to eligible growers who are interested in purchasing it.

The federal crop insurance program is a part of the Farm Bill, which is up for reauthorization in 2023. As the Farm Bill process moves forward, PIA plans to continue its work ensuring policymakers understand the critical role our independent agent members play in providing crop insurance.

For more details on PIA’s advocacy in the area of crop insurance, please visit the Crop Insurance section of the PIA Policy Priorities webpage.

Flood Insurance: PIA supports the long-term reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). In the past, PIA endorsed a legislative package that unanimously passed the House Financial Services Committee but never made it to the House floor and ultimately was not considered by the Senate either.

This year, PIA is encouraging Congress to pass a long-term reauthorization with needed reforms. The NFIP, which has been extended over 20 times on a short-term basis since 2017, is set to expire again on September 30, 2023 in the absence of Congressional action. 

For more details on PIA’s advocacy in the area of flood insurance, please visit the Flood Insurance section of the PIA Policy Priorities webpage.

Cannabis Safe Harbor: Initially conceived as a banking-specific bill, the Secure And Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act was introduced in the 117th Congress with several essential new provisions meant to protect agents, brokers, and insurers from federal criminal liability for engaging in the business of insurance with cannabis-related entities in states where cannabis is legal. PIA strongly supports the SAFE Banking Act, which would protect insurance agents, brokers, and carriers.

As always, PIA’s position respects state insurance laws; PIA and its members seek to protect independent agents from criminal liability for engaging in business activities that are legal pursuant to state law.

For more details on PIA’s advocacy in the area of cannabis financial services, please visit the Cannabis Safe Harbor section of the PIA Priorities webpage.

Tax Issues: PIA supports the Main Street Tax Certainty Act (not yet introduced in the 118th Congress), which would make permanent the 20 percent tax deduction available to some S corporations, also known as passthrough corporations.

For more details on PIA’s advocacy on tax issues, please visit the Tax section of the PIA Policy Priorities webpage.

Repeal of the Federal Insurance Office (FIO): The Federal Insurance Office (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. For that reason, PIA supports legislation to repeal the FIO.

We will continue to encourage members of Congress to introduce and support FIO repeal legislation in both chambers.

For more details on PIA’s efforts to repeal the FIO, please visit the FIO section of the PIA Policy Priorities webpage.

Healthcare Issues: PIA supports policies that improve independent agents’ ability to sell health insurance and demonstrate the value of employer-sponsored health coverage to the health insurance industry.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently finalized a rule that made significant changes to existing marketing requirements for both Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D plans. PIA, along with other agent groups, strongly opposed the final rule, which imposes an additional demand on licensed agents and brokers attempting to assist Medicare beneficiaries in choosing suitable health care and prescription drug plans. The rule expanded the definition of third-party marketing organization (TPMO) to include licensed agents, which could discourage them from representing Medicare Advantage and Part D Plans, until they can develop compliant processes and procedures.

In 2022, legislation (not yet reintroduced in the 118th Congress) was introduced that would have made the TPMO recording requirement in the Medicare rule more targeted by restoring the previous definition of TPMO, which did not include agents. PIA strongly supports this legislation and will seek to have it reintroduced in the 118th Congress this year.

For more details on PIA’s advocacy efforts on healthcare, please visit the Healthcare section of the PIA Policy Priorities webpage.

Consumer Data Privacy: The midterm electionsresulted in the Republicans regaining control of the House and its Financial Services Committee, now chaired by Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC). Chairman McHenry has indicated that passing a data privacy bill will be among his top priorities early in the new Congress.  

At the same time, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is currently combining two of its consumer data privacy-related model laws. In accordance with our longstanding support of the existing structure of state-based insurance oversight, PIA plans to provide feedback to the NAIC as it undertakes this important project.

PIA will also work to prevent Congress from passing intrusive federal law in this area; the development of a prescriptive federal legislative regime that would further preempt and disrupt existing state law would be disastrous for the state-based insurance regulatory structure. It would undermine existing state law, current state legislative activity around the country, the NAIC’s existing and future models, and the entire state-based insurance regulatory structure, which has effectively protected insurance consumers and cultivated innovation for over a century.

For more details on PIA’s advocacy efforts on data privacy, please visit the Consumer Data Privacy section of the PIA Policy Priorities webpage.