The Connecticut General Assembly adjourned its 2009 regular legislative session at midnight on Wednesday, concluding an active session for the property/casualty insurance industry, according to the American Insurance Association (AIA).
“This was a hard fought session for the insurance industry as a whole, and busy year for the General Assembly,” said Laura Kersey, AIA Northeast region assistant vice president, noting that the House and Senate immediately began a special session to address the biennial budget as there was no budget agreement before the regular session ended.
The property/casualty industry saw the passage of House Bill 6280, An Act Extending the Sunset Date for Personal Risk Insurance Rate Filings, which extends the sunset date for the flex rating law from July 1, 2009, to July 1, 2011. “We commend the General Assembly for passing House Bill 6280,” said Kersey. “AIA strongly supported the legislation and hopes Governor Rell signs the measure into law in the very near future.”
The session ended before the Senate was able to consider House Bill 6444, An Act Concerning Automobile Insurance. House Bill 6444 originally contained both a ban on the use of credit as well as restrictions on territorial rating; proposals AIA strongly opposed. Upon further review, the Insurance Committee amended the bill to eliminate both the ban on credit and the restrictions on territorial rating. In addition, the Committee substituted language codifying the Department's current guidelines on the use of financial history measurement programs and establishing "extraordinary life circumstance" exceptions to the use of credit.
Earlier this session, the legislature effectively defeated several adverse bills, including: Senate Bill 530, legislation that would have established a state-mandated catastrophe (CAT) fund in Connecticut; Senate Bill 1024, which would have established a state workers’ compensation insurance program; and Senate Bill 763, which would have allowed a private cause of action for unfair claim settlement practices without the necessity of showing a general business practice on the part of an insurer. AIA actively opposed all of these bills.
“These proposals would have resulted in unfair consequences for Connecticut consumers, especially in the current economic climate. Overall, the results from this legislative session will help maintain a healthy marketplace for Connecticut consumers,” concluded Kersey.