Legislature(2001 - 2002)

05/07/2001 10:22 AM JUD

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                     ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                   
                    SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE                                                                                
                            May 7, 2001                                                                                         
                            10:22 a.m.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Robin Taylor, Chair                                                                                                     
Senator John Cowdery                                                                                                            
Senator Johnny Ellis                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dave Donley, Vice Chair                                                                                                 
Senator Gene Therriault                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 184(JUD) am                                                                                               
"An Act relating to insurance; amending Rule 402, Alaska Rules of                                                               
Evidence; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                 
     MOVED SCS CSHB 184(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 152(RLS)                                                                                                  
"An Act relating to brewpub licenses; and providing for an                                                                      
effective date."                                                                                                                
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
HB 184 - See Judiciary minutes dated 5/4/01, 5/5/01, and 5/6/01.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HB 152 - See Labor and Commerce minutes dated 5/1/01 and                                                                        
          Judiciary minutes dated 5/5/01 and 5/6/01.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Bob Lohr, Director                                                                                                          
Division of Insurance                                                                                                           
Department of Community & Economic Development                                                                                  
3601 C S                                                                                                                        
treet, Suite 1324                                                                                                               
Anchorage, Alaska 99503-5948                                                                                                    
POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported HB 184                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 01-34, SIDE A                                                                                                            
Number 001                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN ROBIN TAYLOR called  the Senate Judiciary Committee meeting                                                          
to order at 10:22  a.m.   Chairman Taylor announced  the first order                                                            
of business would be HB 184.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                 HB 184-INSURANCE CODE AMENDMENTS                                                                           
                                                                                                                              
CHAIRMAN  TAYLOR stated  there have  been previous  hearings on  the                                                            
bill  but  it  was held  until  the  Director  of  the  Division  of                                                            
Insurance made changes.  He moved the changes as Taylor amendment 1.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. BOB  LOHR, Director  Division of Insurance,  explained  that the                                                            
amendments  direct the  Division of  Insurance  to adopt  commercial                                                            
deregulation regulations  by July 1, 2002. The division would set up                                                            
a file and  use system, which  means that  upon receipt of  a filing                                                            
from  certain  insurer  categories  for filings  that  meet  certain                                                            
standards,  the  division  would not  go  through a  review  process                                                            
before the filings took  effect. They would be informational filings                                                            
with the division.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
This kind  of system is  used for accounts  that are represented  by                                                            
sophisticated  purchasers.   These are  entities  who  want  to  buy                                                            
commercial  insurance and have highly  qualified staff and  possibly                                                            
risk managers.  They do not need the Division of Insurance  consumer                                                            
protection the  way residential and auto purchasers  do because they                                                            
are well  able  to watch  out for their  own interests.  Because  of                                                            
their market  power,  they may be  able to  negotiate better  policy                                                            
prices  with  an  insurer.   Standards  of  neither  excessive   not                                                            
inadequate for rates and  language in the policy provision to be not                                                            
misleading  would continue to apply  for anyone below the  threshold                                                            
chosen in these regulation.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
In reviewing  language,  it appears  that the  division already  has                                                            
authority to do  this by order but this would mandate  it be done by                                                            
regulation. The division supports this approach.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN  TAYLOR asked  whether there  was additional  testimony  or                                                            
objection  to  the  amendment.  There  was  none.  Amendment  1  was                                                            
adopted.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  moved SCS  HB 184(JUD).  There being no  objection,                                                            
the bill moved from committee as amended.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 10:30 a.m.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

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