RIMS on the Hill 2012 Recap
"This was a wonderful opportunity to see politics in motion and gain valuable insight into the minds of our elected leaders.”
--Carla Wynn, member RIMS External Affairs Committee
On June 3-5, RIMS hosted the 14th Annual RIMS on the Hill. The conference kicked off Sunday with an evening reception before a full day of focusing on educational briefing panels on legislative priorities. Highlights featured Federal Insurance Office Director Michael McRaith and luncheon speaker Stuart Rothenberg, a well-known pollster and political pundit. On the third day, approximately 40 RIMS members descended on Capitol Hill to meet with more than 70 congressional offices to present the views of RIMS and risk managers on federal issues.
Three issues covered at this year’s conference included:
NFIP – National Flood Insurance Program - H.R. 1309; S. 1940
While the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1309, last year, the Senate bill is expected to be discussed before the July 4th recess. Both bills include a 5 year re-authorization, which RIMS argues makes for good policy. Lapses in coverage create uncertainty in the housing and commercial property markets, possibly leading to delays in real estate transactions and adversely impacting the economy. Also included are much needed improvements to the floodplain mapping, the appeals process and other key reforms (actuarial sound rates) that will put the NFIP back on the path to financial solvency.
Insurance Regulation Modernization - Federal Insurance Office (FIO)
RIMS supports the FIO and stressed continued appropriate funding for the office, greater national uniformity for financial solvency, licensing and collateral requirements for commercial property and casualty insurers. RIMS argues that greater uniformity will create efficiencies in process, reduce redundancies, increase US-based insurers ability to compete in the global insurance market and favorably impact taxpayers and policyholders.
SMART Act – “Strengthening Medicare and Repaying Taxpayers Act” - H.R. 1063; S.1718
The Medicare Secondary Payer process and the legislative solution is gaining traction with broad-based bipartisan support. This proposed legislation attempts to reduce bureaucratic red tape by implementing efficiencies in the current process, ensuring reimbursement to the fund much faster than current law.