State legislators’ irritation with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners surfaced here at many points during the summer meeting of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators.
One result of this was adoption of a resolution “opposing certain executive sessions of public policy officials.” The resolution was a reaction to reports of the NAIC, Kansas City, Mo., holding some of its meetings in closed session and not allowing state legislators to attend or participate. The resolution, cosponsored by all of the leaders of NCOIL, Troy, N.Y., refers to what the authors describe as “a consistent, long-standing NAIC practice of closing meetings for reasons beyond those accepted by Open Meeting Laws.”
The resolution urges the NAIC “to conduct all meetings, to the extent appropriate, in open session,” and also “encourages state legislatures to amend their state Open Meetings Laws…to address specific concerns regarding state officials attending out-of-state meetings of national organizations.”
Another point of contention–the NAIC’s accreditation program–arose in a session on NCOIL-NAIC dialogue.
Rhode Island Superintendent Joseph Torti called accreditation “a shining star that has help to preserve the state regulatory system.”
While NCOIL has been critical of “the hasty addition of models to the accreditation program, only four new models have been added to the program since 1999,” Torti said.
Since 1997, NCOIL has expressed the need for a 3-year exposure period for any model being considered for the accreditation program as well as the need for 26 states to approve a model before it becomes an accreditation standard, said Rhode Island state Rep. Brian Kennedy, D-Hopkinton, R.I.
Kennedy charged that the NAIC has reduced the exposure time to 1 year. NCOIL, he said, believes “this hurry-up process is not in our best interest and that in many cases we don’t know the full impact.”
Torti said the prevailing idea at the NAIC is to see how many states adopt a model during the exposure period. If not many do, then a model would not likely become an accreditation standard, he said.