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Panel To Weigh OII Proposal

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The House Financial Services Committee capital markets subcommittee may act July 9 on H.R. 5840, a bill that would create an Office of Insurance Information within the Treasury Department.

The subcommittee also is weighing whether to act at the same time on H.R. 5611, a bill that would reestablish the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers, and on H.R. 5792, a bill that would allow risk retention groups to sell property insurance, according to several insurance industry lobbyists.

H.R. 5840, the Insurance Information Act, was introduced in the House in April by Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., chairman of the capital markets subcommittee.

The OII, the agency created by the bill, would give the federal government advice on insurance issues and help the U.S. Trade Representative in dealings with other countries.

OII watchers are expecting Kanjorski to propose a substitute bill that would limit the OII’s authority to preempt state regulation and add a representative from the Federal Trade Commission to the OII’s advisory board.

H.R. 5611, the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers Reform Act of 2008, would establish a private, nonprofit, national producer licensing entity that would be managed by a board made up of state insurance regulators and marketplace representatives.

H.R. 5792, the Increasing Insurance Coverage Options for Consumers Act, would allow risk retention groups to offer property insurance.

The Senate has no companion bills for any of the insurance bills that the capital market subcommittee is considering.

Congress is taking a Fourth of July recess this week and will resume work Monday.


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