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Republicans probe Biden admin’s local weather overreach into shopper insurance coverage

EXCLUSIVE: Republican lawmakers on a key Home Monetary Providers Committee panel are probing the Biden administration’s efforts to impose its local weather agenda on insurance coverage corporations.

In a letter Friday to Federal Insurance coverage Workplace (FIO) Director Steven Seitz, each Republican member of the Home and Insurance coverage Subcommittee, led by Chairman Warren Davidson, R-Ohio, expressed concern concerning the company’s latest actions to gather climate-related information from property and casualty insurers. 

The lawmakers argued such actions have been restricted to state insurance coverage regulators, not the FIO which is a subagency of the Treasury Division. The letter to Seitz additionally famous that whereas the Dodd-Frank Wall Avenue Reform and Shopper Safety Act of 2010 authorizes the company to gather sure information, it limits such actions to conventional regulation and mandates session with state insurance coverage regulators.

“Local weather alarmists and activists are abusing the Federal Insurance coverage Workplace by overstepping state regulators to gather local weather information,” Davidson informed Fox Information Digital in an announcement. “The FIO’s lack of fine religion to coordinate with state insurance coverage regulators units a harmful precedent that would in the end undermine Congress’s intent below the Dodd-Frank shopper safety regulation.”


In line with the Cornell Authorized Info Institute, the Dodd-Frank Act established the FIO to observe the U.S. insurance coverage business to establish points or gaps that would lead to crises. Nonetheless, the statute particularly requires the workplace to “seek the advice of with the states relating to insurance coverage issues of nationwide or worldwide significance.”

Davidson and his fellow Republican subcommittee members wrote of their letter that the FIO’s latest actions deviate from “the letter and spirit of Dodd-Frank.”

“Requiring FIO to coordinate with state insurance coverage regulators is essential to making sure that FIO can conduct related actions to realize its objectives whereas additionally sustaining the confirmed state-based regulation of insurance coverage,” they wrote. “Nonetheless, we consider that FIO has knowingly sidestepped this requirement to advance its personal agenda.”


In August 2021, the FIO launched a request for info on a proposal to acquire climate-related monetary danger information from the insurance coverage sector. Then, in October, the FIO issued a proposed information assortment, asking for public feedback by the center of December. The motion would require 213 insurance coverage corporations to share information from each U.S. zip code.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen stated on the time that the motion was “an vital step in figuring out how People are being affected by the rising prices of local weather change.” She famous the devastation brought on by Hurricane Ian in Florida for instance of why the company wanted to maneuver ahead with the motion.

Nonetheless, whereas the motion was lauded by left-wing teams like Middle for American Progress and Public Citizen, it was blasted by each the insurance coverage business and the Nationwide Affiliation of Insurance coverage Commissioners (NAIC), a gaggle representing state regulators. 

“As the first regulators of this sector, state insurance coverage regulators are on the frontlines of pure disaster preparedness and response, defending policyholders and sustaining well-functioning insurance coverage markets,” NAIC officers wrote to the Treasury Division in November. “State insurance coverage regulators, via the NAIC, have had a climate-specific working group for greater than a decade.”

“It’s unclear how FIO will use the info they intend to gather, and it’s probably that any evaluation can be misinterpreted and produce fallacious ends in making an attempt to establish local weather danger,” they continued. “Treasury is requesting property insurance coverage market information at a granular stage, however it’s unclear how that information can be married with different info as an example local weather danger particularly.”

Along with Davidson, Reps. Invoice Posey, R-Fla., Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-Mo., Ralph Norman, R-S.C., Scott Fitzgerald, R-Wisc., Andrew Garbarino, R-N.Y., Mike Flood, R-Neb., Michael Lawler, R-N.Y., Monica De La Cruz, R-Texas, and Erin Houchin, R-Ind., signed the letter to Seitz.

The FIO did not instantly reply to a request for remark.

This text was initially revealed by Learn the original article here.

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