PIA of Louisiana's 71st Annual Convention
July 19-22, 2014 • The Grand Hotel, Point Clear, AL
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Citizens Property Insurance Rates Rising
for Most Commercial Customers.
Commercial Insurance Customers above Gulf Intracoastal Waterway to See Increase

Premiums for almost all of Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corp.'s commercial customers will increase an average of 2.3 percent beginning in February, under a proposed rate filing.

But the 307 customers whose properties lie below the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway will see rates drop by 17.5 percent, said Citizens Chief Financial Officer Steve Cottrell. The average policyholder there will see annual rates drop to $4,764, a savings of $1,011.

The main reason is that the cost of reinsurance, the insurance that insurers buy to protect themselves from excessive claims, has fallen, Cottrell said. The reinsurance savings are greater in coastal areas, where the risk of hurricane losses is greater and reinsurance costs are higher.

Four parishes account for almost all of the policies below the Intracoastal: Lafourche, Plaquemines, Terrebonne and Jefferson. Citizens cut commercial rates in those areas an average of 23.8 percent for 2014.

Citizens has 4,023 commercial policies above the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. Roughly half of those properties lie in Orleans and Jefferson parishes, according to the rate filing. The average premium above the Intracoastal will increase 2.3 percent, or $109, to $4,846.

Taking into account those receiving increases and those with decreases, overall commercial premiums will be reduced by 0.2 percent, Cottrell said. It's the second year in a row that Citizens has reduced overall commercial rates.

Citizens' board of directors voted Thursday to approve the rate filing. Galligan said he initially was against the rate decrease because he doesn't want to see Citizens competing with private companies.

But Citizens has done such a good job reducing its reinsurance costs that the state-backed insurer has no choice, he said.

Citizens is the state's property insurer of last resort and covers properties private insurance companies will not. In most cases, state law requires Citizens to charge more than private insurers.

BY TED GRIGGS

Baton Rouge Advocate
Sept. 12, 2014





Upcoming PIA Events
10/01/2014 -- North Shore Chapter Meeting

10/06/2014 -- Northeast Golf Tournament & Social

10/08/2014 -- CISR Personal Auto
(Kenner, LA)

10/08/2014 -- CISR Elements of Risk Management
(Baton Rouge, LA)

10/09/2014 -- Northwest Chapter Meeting

10/14/2014 -- CPIA-2 Implement For Success
(Opelousas, LA)

10/15/2014 -- PIA of Baton Rouge Ethics Class

10/15/2014 -- Baton Rouge Chapter Meeting and CISR Conferment

10/21/2014 -- Acadiana Chapter Meeting

10/22/2014 -- CPIA-2
(Kenner, LA)



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Virtual Exhibit Hall


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Virtual Exhibit Hall

Hurricane Relief Center
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Hurricane Relief Center



Free Webinar Series for National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Agility Recovery, in collaboration with the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA's) Ready campaign, is putting on a series of free webinars throughout September in recognition of National Preparedness Month.

The SBA wants to help business owners take charge of the well-being of their own companies, the safety of their employees and the sustenance of their local economies by being prepared to rebound quickly from any kind of disaster. The half-hour webinars will be presented every Wednesday in September at 2 pm ET. Visit http://snurl.com/296yw4e to register for any or all of the webinars listed below:

September 17: The Top 5 Steps for Preparedness This Year
The top five ways to prepare for disaster-related business interruptions will be discussed.

September 24: If You Do Nothing Else This Year
Simple, low-cost tips on building a solid business continuity plan.

SBA has also partnered with Agility Recovery to offer business continuity strategies through their "PrepareMyBusiness" website. Visit www.preparemybusiness.org to check out the archived webinars and for more disaster preparedness tools.








Louisiana's Homeowners Market Stronger
9 Years after Katrina

Louisiana's property insurance market is vastly improved nine years after Hurricane Katrina devastated the state on Aug. 29, 2005, largely due to the implementation of statewide building codes and strategies that have helped create a more competitive marketplace, according to the state's insurance commissioner.

"Following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita we developed a combination of strategies including the Louisiana Citizens Depopulation Program to improve Louisiana's property insurance market," said Commissioner Jim Donelon. "Our market is actually more competitive and more diverse than it was prior to 2005 and we now have 21 new insurance groups writing in Louisiana who were not here pre-Katrina. While larger companies have downsized their exposure along the coast, we've been successful in filling that vacuum with smaller, regional and financially stable companies that I believe represent the future of coastal property insurance markets."

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PIA Joins Broad Business Coalition Saying: "Pass TRIA Now!"

PIA has joined with a wide business coalition assembled by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in urging Congress to pass an extension of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA).

A letter to the U.S. House of Representatives urging a vote to renew TRIA was signed by 407 coalition members, including PIA. Signers represented the full scope of American business. Many insurance carriers and carrier associations signed on, as did insurance associations such as the Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers (CIAB) along with PIA.

Despite increasing pressure from the business community, it is possible that TRIA will not be dealt with until a lame duck session. Congress is back in Washington, D.C., for an abbreviated session before heading back out on the campaign trail. The program is currently set to expire Dec. 31.

"TRIA has made it possible for the American economy to get the coverage it needs, while protecting the taxpayer," stated the letter in part. "By maintaining our economic stability in the face of ongoing terrorist threats, TRIA serves as a vital public-private risk sharing mechanism. TRIA fosters certainty in the marketplace by ensuring that private terrorism risk insurance coverage remains commercially available at virtually no cost to the taxpayer." Read the full letter here





Thanks to Our 2014 PIA Partners:
                     

Americas Insurance Company


American Strategic Insurance (ASI)


Capital Premium Financing

Markel FirstComp

LCTA Workers' Comp

LUBA Workers' Comp

Prime Rate

Stonetrust Commercial Ins. Co.

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