Two Gulf-Coast senators are seeking to remove a Senate flood-insurance legislation provision requiring flood coverage in areas already protected by levees, dams or other flood-control structures.

Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., and Mark Pryor, D-Ark., have announced that they are seeking to have Sec. 107 removed from a bill that was reported out of the Senate Banking Committee Sept. 8. This section would expand required insurance coverage to “areas of residual risk” that are located behind levees, near dams or other flood-control structures.

Cochran says Sec. 107 creates new flood-insurance coverage mandates on families and businesses that are already protected by strong levees and dams. “The blanket approach taken in the current bill should be changed in order to ensure fair treatment for those protected properties,” Cochran says.

Call For Comment

The Federal Insurance Office (FIO) is asking interested parties to comment on a host of issues—including the potential costs and benefits of federal regulation of insurance across various lines—as it works to prepare a mandated study on insurance issues.

The comments are due Dec. 11, but the FIO asks that they be sent in as early as possible.

The proposal requests comment on 12 major issues, including solvency, consumer protection, international competitiveness and regulation.

Among specific issues, it asks for comment on the feasibility of regulating only certain lines of insurance at the federal level while leaving other lines of insurance to be regulated by the states. It also asks about the ability of any potential federal regulation or regulator to eliminate or minimize regulatory arbitrage.

It also asks for comment on capital standards and the relationship between capital allocation and liabilities, including standards relating to liquidity and duration risk, and on systemic-risk regulation with respect to insurance.

Consumer-protection issues are also raised, with the FIO asking for comment on whether consumer protection for insurance products and practices is adequate.

The FIO is seeking comment on the degree of national uniformity of state insurance regulation, including the identification of, and methods for, assessing excessive, duplicative or outdated insurance regulation or regulatory licensing process.

Information is also requested on whether there is appropriate international coordination of insurance regulation and the impact that developments in the regulation of insurance in foreign jurisdictions might have on the potential federal regulation of insurance.