In this report, we assess today’s House FinServ Housing and Insurance Subcommittee hearing on two bipartisan Federal Insurance Office (FIO) reform proposals. H.R. 3762 and H.R. 3861 have both been introduced by Chairman Duffy (R-WI) and Rep. Heck (D-WA). As we noted when these bills were introduced, they would allow Congressional disapproval of covered agreements and increase the role of state insurance regulators in the international standard setting process by requiring “consensus” before FIO can advocate U.S. positions in international forums. Just what consensus means was a topic of debate, with Rep. Capuano (D-MA) saying that it could just require consultation and Rep. Hultgren (R-IL) asking witnesses if a specific threshold should be outlined. Both members were supportive of the reform efforts. FinServ Ranking Member Waters (D-CA) and Rep. Velázquez (D-NY) defended FIO’s domestic authority while Rep. Royce (R-CA) argued that the states are incapable of expressing a unified position in international negotiations and that this requires a federal role.
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