Environment Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

HB-5453

Title:

AN ACT CONCERNING THE RENEWAL OF LIABILITY INSURANCE POLICIES FOR UNDERGROUND STORAGE TANKS.

Vote Date:

3/22/2018

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable Substitute

PH Date:

3/16/2018

File No.:

Disclaimer: The following Joint Favorable Report is prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and does not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose.

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Environment Committee

Rep. Craig C. Fishbein, 90th Dist.

REASONS FOR BILL:

The bill seeks to assist commercial general liability insurance policy holders through the automatic renewal for insurance policies issued for underground storage tanks. Underground storage tanks may often require high maintenance and are sometimes known to leak contaminants into their surroundings. The bill advocates that insurance companies are denying renewals solely because the subject of the policy in question is in regards to underground storage tanks.

Substitute Language – LCO No. 3061:

Substitute language clarifies that any liability insurance policy issued for underground storage tanks cannot be cancelled or denied solely because it applies to an underground storage tank.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

Connecticut Insurance Department:

The Department has concerns with the bill. The Department would note that if the intent of this proposal is to cover clean-up costs related to leaking or the removal of otherwise compromised underground storage tanks, then simply providing a renewal of the general liability policy likely will not result in coverage due to a number of conditions and exclusions in such policies. This could restrict overall offerings of general liability coverage for underground tanks or result in coverage that is prohibitive.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

Margaret Miner, Executive Director, Rivers Alliance of Connecticut:

Underground tanks for heating oil, gasoline, and other contaminants pollute aquifers. Due to the impact of this waste to communities across the state, it is recommended that if a premium increase is allowed, it be tied to a widely accepted index such as an increase in social security payments.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

Eric George, President, Insurance Association of CT:

The bill will erode insurance carriers ability to make appropriate business decisions. Furthermore, carriers may not know of a tank in the first place, leading them to insure risks that were not disclosed to them.

Reported by: Steve Smith, Asst. Clerk

Date: 3/27/2018