SENATE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE

 

 

February 17, 2005                                                                                                   Hearing Room C

3:10 P.M.                                                                                                                      Tapes 17 - 18

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:         Sen. Floyd Prozanski, Chair

Sen. Roger Beyer, Vice-Chair

Sen. Ginny Burdick

Sen. Doug Whitsett

 

MEMBER EXCUSED:          Sen. Charlie Ringo

 

STAFF PRESENT:                 Anna Braun, Committee Administrator

Karen Scoffield, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURES/ISSUES HEARD:        

                                                SB 118 – Public Hearing

                                                SB 459 – Public Hearing

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 17, A

005

Chair Prozanski

Calls the meeting to order at 3:14 p.m. Opens public hearing on SB 118 and SB 459.

SB 118, SB 459 - PUBLIC HEARING

010

Anna Braun

Committee Administrator.  Provides an overview of SB 118.

020

Cory Streisinger

Director, Department of Consumer and Business Services (DCBS).  Testifies in support of SB 118.  Discusses the many calls received by DCBS concerning homeowners insurance.  Tells of the public forums held by DCBS on homeowners insurance.

045

Joel Ario

Insurance Administrator, DCBS. Discusses and submits written testimony (EXHIBIT A), Homeowner Bill of Rights informational brochure (EXHIBIT B), and Homeowner Bills of Rights conceptual overview (EXHIBIT C) in support of SB 118.

075

Chair Prozanski

Asks for clarification of exhibits that Ario is referring to.

085

Ario

Answers question.  Discusses and submits proposed amendments by DCBS to SB 118 (EXHIBIT D)

110

Chair Prozanski

Clarifies amendments that are currently written for SB 118.

115

Ario

Discusses numbers 1 through 4 of written testimony.

180

Ario

Continues and discusses numbers 5 through 7 of written testimony.

275

Ario

Discusses numbers 8 and 9 of written testimony.

345

Ario

Summarizes and concludes.  Discusses number 10 of written testimony.

380

Chair Prozanski

Invites Sen. Deckert and his constituent, Kenneth Evansen to the stand. 

Converses with Sen. Deckert regarding testimony.

425

Sen. Deckert

Senate District 14.  Introduces constituent, Kenneth Evansen.  Discusses and submits and written testimony in support of SB 459 (EXHIBIT E)

430

Kenneth Evansen

Citizen, Portland, Oregon. Discusses and submits written testimony in support of SB 459 (EXHIBIT F).  Discusses suggestion for mandatory notification process of changes to customer’s insurance policies. 

TAPE 18, A

035

Evansen

Continues to testify to support of SB 459.  Discusses personal experience with having an insurance policy cancelled on him.

065

Chair Prozanski

Asks DCBS a question regarding EXHIBIT D. 

075

Ario

Answers question.

080

Sen. Whitsett

Asks a question regarding number 4 in Ario’s testimony.

090

Ario

Answers question. Refers to page 4 of EXHIBIT A.

100

Chair Prozanski

Notes that the item being discussed is on page 14, section 5 line 26(c) of SB 459.

105

Whitsett

Discusses a possible scenario and asks Ario a question regarding it.

110

Ario

Answers question.

135

Sam Sorich

Vice President, Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI). Discusses and submits written testimony in opposition to SB 118 (EXHIBIT G).

180

Sorich

Remarks that the bill considers that all insurance companies consider all claims in the same way.

270

Sorich

Continues.  Discusses previous testimony from Ario.  Discusses customer inquiries.

290

Dan Boone

Claim Manager, Allstate, Tigard, Oregon. Testifies in opposition to SB 118.  Discusses denied claims.

375

Sen. Whitsett

Asks Sorich for clarification about the approximate number of homeowners insurance policies in Oregon.

380

Sorich

Estimates that there are 1 million policies.

385

Whitsett

Comments regarding the statistics provided by Sorich. Inquires regarding the complaints mentioned by Sorich and if he knows how many of the complaints resulted in some sanction to the insurance company.

390

Sorich

Answers the he does not know whether the complaints were justified at all. 

395

Chair Prozanski

Asks Boone about an example he provided of someone traveling with valuables and how they would see an individual as a risk.

410

Boone

Answers question.

415

Chair Prozanski

Inquires what Allstate would anticipate people do with their valuables when traveling.

420

Boone

Answers question. Remarks that Allstate did not deny the claim previously discussed, but asked for proof of the claim and the insured chose not to pursue the claim.

425

Chair Prozanski

Asks Sorich regarding the number of insurance organizations that are in PCI.

430

Sorich

Answers that 300 of PCI’s member companies do business in the state of Oregon and 69 of the member companies write homeowners insurance in Oregon.

435

Chair Prozanski

Inquires if other states have provisions limiting look back regarding homeowners insurance.

TAPE 17, B

030

Sorich

Answers that few companies look back beyond five (5) years.  Discusses the importance of having competition in the marketplace and the ability to have a variety of underwriting practices.

040

Chair Prozanski

Asks if companies provide to the policy holders or prospective policy holders how far they look back.

041

Sorich

Answers question.

050

Linda Gatto

Citizen, Clackamas County, Oregon. Discusses and submits written testimony with a neutral position to SB 118 (EXHIBIT H).  Discusses personal experience with homeowners insurance company.

100

Linda Schwerzler

Citizen, Eugene, Oregon.  Discusses and submits written testimony in support of SB 118 (EXHIBIT I). Discusses personal experience with homeowners insurance company.

170

Mickey Tate

Program Coordinator, Seniors and People with Disabilities Department of Human Services (SPD).  Discusses support of SB 118.  Discuses the difficulty of the Adult Foster Home community to obtain liability insurance and also homeowners insurance.

200

Janet Arenz

Executive Director, Oregon Alliance for Child Advocacy. Discusses and submits written testimony in support of SB 118 (EXHIBIT J). Discusses desire to amend the bill.

255

Grover Simmons

Independent Adult Foster Home Association.  Submits written testimony without public testimony on behalf of Dixie Ellard (EXHIBIT K) and submits a notice of cancellation of insurance (EXHIBIT L).  Discusses support of SB 118.

320

Steve Dixon

Oregon State Public Interest Research Group, (OSPIRG).  Discusses and submits written testimony in support of SB 118 (EXHIBIT M).  

TAPE 18, B

010

Greg Ledbetter

Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Discusses support of SB 118.  Discusses concerns of members of SEIU regarding homeowners insurance and their desire to support SB 118. 

065

Dixon

Discusses look back issue.

080

Whitsett

Inquires regarding the liability going with the owner and not the house. Discusses damage to homes that can be a problem even after things are fixed.

095

Dixon

Responds and discusses parallels of homeowners insurance to the car insurance market.  Discusses that the claim staying with the home puts homeowners in a double jeopardy.

105

Ledbetter

Discusses mold and mitigation. Discusses concern of the bill dealing with mitigation and how to make sure it has been done.

120

Sen. Beyer

Disagrees with Dixon’s relation of the parallels between homeowners insurance and auto insurance.  Inquires where Ledbetter’s insurance knowledge comes from.

135

Ledbetter

Answers question and discusses experience in insurance.

145

John Powell

State Farm and Liberty NW.  Testifies in opposition to SB 118 and SB 459. 

170

Jack Munro

American Insurance Association. Testifies in opposition to SB 118.

200

Angela Kimball

Association of Oregon Community Mental Health Programs. Testifies in support of SB 118.  Discusses the problems associated with obtaining community housing and placement.  Remarks that the inability to gain insurance is causing some of their problems.

The following prepared testimony is submitted for the record without public testimony:

 

Shirley Fichtner Dempsey

Owner of an Adult Foster Home, Medford, Oregon.  Submits written testimony in support of SB 118 (EXHIBIT N).

 

Linda Hawk

Foster Care Provider.  Submits written testimony in support of SB 118 (EXHIBIT O).

 

Lisa Hargis

Vice President-Personal Lines, Oregon Mutual Insurance Group.  Submits written testimony in opposition to SB 118 (EXHIBIT P).

225

Chair Prozanski

Asks individuals to take two weeks in a workgroup to resolve items discussed in the hearing.  Closes public hearing on SB 118 and SB 459.  Adjourns the meeting at 4:54 p.m.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

  1. SB 118, written testimony, Joel Ario, 6 pp
  2. SB 118, informational brochure, Joel Ario, 2 pp
  3. SB 118, conceptual overview, Joel Ario, 2 pp
  4. SB 118, proposed amendments, Joel Ario, 3 pp
  5. SB 459, written testimony, Sen. Ryan Deckert, 1 p
  6. SB 459, written testimony, Kenneth M. Evansen, 1 p
  7. SB 118, written testimony, Sam Sorich, 5 pp
  8. SB 118, written testimony, Linda Gatto, 2 pp
  9. SB 118, written testimony, Linda Schwerzler, 1 p
  10. SB 118, written testimony, Janet Arenz, 2 pp
  11. SB 118, written testimony of Dixie Ellard, Grover Simmons, 2 pp
  12. SB 118, cancellation notice, Grover Simmons, 2 pp
  13. SB 118, written testimony, Steve Dixon, 2 pp
  14. SB 118, written testimony, Shirley Fichtner Dempsey, 1 p
  15. SB 118, written testimony, Linda Hawk, 1 p
  16. SB 118, written testimony, Lisa Hargis, 2 pp