Governor Perry has announced that the topic could be a part of the special session of the Legislature.
According to Texas Governor Rick Perry, a special legislative session that is already being convened for redistricting could also include the topic of a storm insurance program for the state.
This would specifically focus on the overhaul of the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA).
The TWIA is already greatly troubled, but the governor has yet to say for certain whether or not lawmakers will be discussing this storm insurance topic within the special session. The Legislature had been called back immediately after the close of its regular 140 day session, which came to an end a week ago. This provided legislators with an additional 30 days for approving the new electoral district voting maps, as well as any additional topics that the governor deems fit.
As of yet, the governor has said that it is “a little premature” to add storm insurance and other items to the agenda.
However, when Perry was specifically asked about whether the TWIA and the state’s storm insurance program could potentially be among the additional subjects during the special session, his response was that “it’s certainly possible”. He explained that the issue of the windstorm coverage is one over which “we’ve spent a lot of time working on and trying to find a solution to. It’s a complex issue as diverse as the state is with the huge exposure that we have along the Gulf Coast.”
The TWIA windstorm coverage program, as it is now in the state, is an insurer under the supervision of the state, which is considered an option of last resort for residents who are unable to obtain private property coverage within the 14 coastal counties within the state in addition to part of Harris County (including Houston).
This windstorm coverage is a subsidized storm insurance program that includes mandatory dues from nonprofit insurers. Ever since Hurricane Ike in 2008, the program has been facing considerable financial trouble, beyond the struggles it was already managing before that time. That hurricane also brought about a number of serious collusion allegations between the TWIA and claims adjustors.