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Big "I" Praises Approval of Terrorism Backstop Bill



BIG “I” PRAISES APPROVAL OF TERRORISM INSURANCE BACKSTOP BILL BY FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE

Nation’s largest insurance association urges Senate to take up S. 2764

 

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 29—The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (the Big “I”), the nation’s largest agents and brokers group, today hailed House Financial Services Committee passage of H.R. 4634, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Backstop Extension Act.

 

The Association also called on the Senate to move forward on its own bipartisan legislation, S. 2764, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Extension Act, before Congress adjourns.

 

The Big “I” has been joined by many of its industry partners in strongly supporting extension of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA). H.R. 4634, introduced by Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas), would extend TRIA for two years through the end of 2007, and require terrorism insurance coverage to be made available.

 

The existing TRIA legislation expires December 31, 2005, but action is needed as soon as possible to avoid gaps in coverage in policies written after December 31, 2004.

 

The Association expressed gratitude today to the Financial Services Committee’s chairman, Rep. Mike Oxley (R-Ohio), and the entire committee for moving the legislation.

 

“We are extremely pleased that the House Financial Services Committee has taken action on this important bill, which is vital to the insurance industry’s ability to cover catastrophic losses related to terrorism and also to preserving confidence in the market,” says Robert A. Rusbuldt, Big “I” CEO. “We thank Chairman Oxley and the whole committee for approving this critical bill, and we call on the full House to pass it as quickly as possible.”

 

“Passage of this bill is crucial to providing certainty in the insurance marketplace,” says Charles E. Symington Jr., Big “I” senior vice president of federal government affairs. “Today’s committee markup was an important step in moving the bill forward to the full House. Passing this legislation is a must for many of the  business clients of independent agents and brokers.”

 

“This is very comprehensive legislation,” Symington adds. “The Big ‘I’ supports this legislation strongly and will continue to work with its industry partners and commercial policyholders to push for its speedy enactment.”

 

Symington and the Big “I” are also strongly urging the Senate to move on S. 2764, and they praise Sens. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and Bob Bennett (R-Utah) for working together to introduce the bipartisan legislation.

 

Founded in 1896, the Big “I” is the nation’s oldest and largest national association of independent insurance agents and brokers, representing a network of more than 300,000 agents, brokers and their employees nationally. Its members are businesses that offer customers a choice of policies from a variety of insurance companies. Independent agents and brokers offer property and casualty insurance, employee benefit plans and retirement products. Web address: www.independentagent.com.