RIMS Seeks to Grow Political Influence; Discusses Initiatives

NU Online News Service, April 18, 12:20 p.m. EST

PHILADELPHIA—Whether it is at a local chapter meeting or in the Halls of Congress, the Risk and Insurance Management Society is setting an ambitious goal to increase its influence over issues that affect the world of risk, says the association’s president.

At RIMS’ 50th annual meeting, President Deborah M. Luthi said during a press conference with RIMS leadership that the goals of the association will be to strengthen relationships and raise the relevance of the association “to be on the cutting edge of risk management.”

She says RIMS will accomplish this goal by aiming to increase the association’s profile through the utilization of technology and social media.

Politics and compliance risk for the membership will be areas of focus, says Luthi, noting that the association is in the process of building the tools to be an effective advocate of regulatory issues in the future.

This is the purpose of RIMS’ Political Action Committee that Luthi says is a bi-partisan vehicle aimed at ensuring “RIMS has a spot at the table and our voice is heard.”

RISK PAC, now in its second year, currently stands at $28,000 and she says members need to help raise that figure. She says risk-management colleagues need to understand that their personal contribution to the PAC is how they will have a voice in political affairs.

To that end, RIMS will be holding its RIMS on the Hill day in June.

Dan Kugler, board liaison to RIMS external-affairs committee and assistant treasurer of corporate risk management at Snap-on Inc. noted there are several pieces of federal legislation RIMS has an interest in and is making its opinion known.

First, the association is working with others to “jump start” a reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program, which is awaiting action in the U.S. Senate.

Another is the Risk Retention and Modernization Act (HR2126) governing captive programs to expand liability and include property risks. Kugler says the association is working to see passage of this bill.

Then there is HR3157 that RIMS opposes, which is bottled up in Congress. That bill, which would “prevent the avoidance of tax through reinsurance through non-tax affiliates,” would have the effect reducing capacity in the insurance industry, Kugler.

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