California Earthquake Authority Proposes to Lower Rates

By Don Jergler | October 23, 2014

The California Earthquake Authority on Thursday proposed an average 8 percent decrease in rates.

CEA’s Advisory Panel recommended the rate decreases, along with additional coverage options in deductibles, discounts and certain limits, to the CEA Governing Board, which next meets in December. Board approval would advance the proposals to regulatory consideration by the California Department of Insurance.

If the board and CDI clear the way, CEA’s new expanded coverages and lower rates would begin to take effect Jan. 1, 2016.

CEA CEO Glenn Pomeroy said an increasingly rate-friendly reinsurance space and capital markets with an appetitive for investing in catastrophe bonds generated enough savings for the carrier to offer the rate
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Pelosi makes the case against Prop. 45

San Francisco Chronicle | October 27, 2014

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi covered plenty of territory in her meeting with The Chronicle’s Editorial Board on Monday, but one issue made her more animated than any other: state Proposition 45’s threat to the landmark federal health care law she shepherded through Congress in 2010.

“If I wanted to kill the Affordable Care Act, I would do this,” she said, slapping a copy of the initiative on the table for emphasis.

Pelosi’s expression of opposition to Prop. 45 was noteworthy in both its vehemence and its level of detail of its “potential to be very disruptive” to Covered California. It also was significant because Pelosi emphasized that
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Does Prop 103 Violate Itself?

By Ian Adams | Right Street Blog | October 20, 2014

The history of the American administrative state has been filled with attempts to introduce “rationality” and “discipline” to circumstances in which markets, left to their own devices, allegedly lead to socially or politically undesirable outcomes.

Brimming with good will and well-meaning intention, champions of state intervention seek to invent systems to accommodate and serve those least able to care for themselves. Californians can even directly participate in such efforts through the initiative process.

In 1988, a slim majority of California voters passed Proposition 103, a landmark initiative they were told would reform the state’s auto insurance market for the better. What they did not count
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RMS: ‘Big One’ in Northern California Could Cause $200B in Losses

October 13, 2014

Earthquake risk in the San Francisco Bay Area is on the rise while earthquake insurance penetration statewide has dropped significantly since the Loma Prieta earthquake that rocked the Bay Area 25 years ago, causing nearly $6 billion in economic losses, an analysis release Monday shows.

The next “big one” has potential to be financially devastating to the Bay Area economy, according to an RMS analysis.

A worst-case, magnitude 7.9 earthquake on the San Andreas Fault could strike an urban center with 32 times the destructive force of Loma Prieta, potentially causing commercial and residential property losses over $200 billion, the analysis shows.

Residential earthquake insurance penetration in California, which would be
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Driverless cars: Lawmakers shouldn’t stymie innovation

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Published: September 29, 2014

THANKS to technological advancements, the idea of a fully automated “driverless” car is moving closer to reality. The greatest threat to such progress may no longer be logistical challenges, but the potential for burdensome regulation.

In “Removing Roadblocks to Intelligent Vehicles and Driverless Cars,” a working paper issued by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, authors Adam Thierer and Ryan Hagemann argue that state policies should facilitate “permissionless innovation” as much as possible.

They say that “generally speaking, patience and humility are the wise policy virtues when considering what to do about highly disruptive technologies. Living in fear of hypothetical worst-case scenarios and basing policy
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Uber plays hardball but fails to win the game

Wednesday, September 3, 2014, 4:56pm PDT, Patrick Hoge, San Francisco Business Times

Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla says the “relentless” confrontational tactics in the state Capitol by the “ridesharing” services Uber Technologies and Lyft made the process for setting insurance requirements for peer-to-peer transportation companies one of the most difficult legislative battles of her career.

“It’s the most difficult bill I’ve been involved in, other than doing a budget with no money and huge deficits,” said Bonilla regarding AB 2993, which the legislature passed last week and forwarded to the governor’s office for signature. “This one, in terms of feeling it was such a relentless struggle to get to a point of reasonable compromise, it certainly
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Aggressive Driving: Transit Company Uber Flexes Its Political Muscle

By  @rachelswan Tuesday, Aug 26 2014

Uber raised the stakes in an already acrimonious transit war last week, after announcing that it had tapped Obama political strategist David Plouffe to lead its own campaign. But that was only the latest in a spate of big-wheel hirings as Uber consolidates its new role in the state capital. Once a mere transit startup, it’s now recast itself as a powerful lobbying arm.

The company is currently gearing up to fight state Assembly Bills 612 and 2293 — the first would impose new permit requirements and background checks for drivers; the second would require UberX drivers to carry $750,000 in liability
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The Most Dangerous Cities: DUIs, Deaths and Your Insurance

DUIs have a high cost, both human and financial. In 2012 alone, 10,322 people were killed in alcohol-related vehicle accidents. There’s also the staggering economic cost of drunk driving — an estimated $199 billion a year in the U.S. And the financial burden after receiving a DUI can be crippling for drivers, who have to pay expensive fines and court costs, then pay again after their car insurance premiums increase.

Drivers in some cities are disproportionately affected by these costs. For example, you are more likely to encounter a drunk driver in Tulsa, Oklahoma, than in San Francisco, California. Even so, the cities with the highest number of fatal alcohol-related vehicle crashes per
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The political moderate is dead. Long live the moderate.

By Philip Bump, July 11

Two key bits of partisan data have been highlighted this week. First, from the liberally inclined ”moderates are largely a statistical myth.” Second, from the libertarian-minded folks at Reason, Millennials are “less beholden to two parties dreamed up before the Civil War” who “would support a candidate who is both socially liberal and fiscally conservative.” Ergo, they are moderates?

Moderates are dead; long live the moderates. Or, better: The way we talk about politics has way more rough edges than we admit.

Vox’s Ezra Klein lifts up a paper from University of California at Berkeley political scientist David Broockman. Broockman’s research suggests, in short, that the way we compile poll responses
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What Popular Rideshares Mean by “At Your Own Risk”

By Joel Grover and Jacquelin Sonderling |  Thursday, Jun 26, 2014  |  Updated 3:56 AM PDT

Rideshare services like UberX are taking the place of taxis, not only here in Los Angeles, but around the world. But as the I-Team has learned, if you’re in a bad accident in an UberX car, you could be left paying the bill.

You may not realize it – but every time you accept a ride with UberX, you also agree to more than a dozen pages of Terms and Conditions. It outlines who’s responsible for what. And buried deep in the terms, Uber says you use its service “at your own risk” and that “you
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