Greg Toczydlowski, President of Personal Insurance for The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE: TRV), participated today on behalf of The Travelers Institute in a roundtable discussion in Gulfport, Miss., hosted by U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R-Miss.). The session convened insurance industry experts, business scholars and elected officials at Gulf Coast Community College to explore long-term solutions to rising insurance costs and barriers to certain kinds of coverage on the Gulf Coast.

Toczydlowski presented the Travelers Coastal Wind Zone Plan, a comprehensive, private market approach to improve the affordability and availability of coastal wind storm insurance for homeowners. The Travelers proposal includes four key principles:
  • A stable and consistent regulatory environment, with a uniform set of rules applied to named windstorm coverage for coastal zones from Texas to Maine;
  • Transparency in calculating insurance premiums;
  • Federal reinsurance mechanism for extreme events; and
  • Stronger buildings through federal guidelines for appropriate building codes and land use planning.

“At Travelers, we recognize that a viable coastal insurance market is important to Mississippi’s economy, and as an industry leader, we feel a genuine responsibility to be engaged in finding a solution to this issue,” said Toczydlowski. “We believe that the Travelers Coastal Plan will help bring back private capital to the marketplace, alleviate the current stress on the residual markets and promote the availability and affordability of homeowners insurance within coastal communities.”

Other participants in the roundtable discussion included Professors Howard Kunrether and Erwann Michel-Kerjan from the Risk Management and Decision Process Center at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, U.S. Representative Gene Taylor (D-Miss.), and Dr. Lloyd Dixon, an economist with the RAND Corporation.

“We feel that participating in this type of public dialogue is very important,” said Joan Woodward, Travelers Executive Vice President of Public Policy and head of The Travelers Institute. “The goal of The Travelers Institute is to be a partner with policymakers to contribute to solutions on a wide range of issues that face our customers, our agents and brokers, and the communities we serve. The only way to come up with a coastal insurance program that works is to engage all stakeholders.”

To learn more about The Travelers Institute or the Travelers Coastal Wind Zone Plan, please visit www.travelersinstitute.com.

About The Travelers Institute

The Travelers Institute, created by The Travelers Companies, Inc., engages in discussion and analysis of public policy topics of importance to the insurance marketplace and the financial services industry. The Travelers Institute draws upon the industry expertise of Travelers’ senior management and the technical expertise of many of Travelers’ underwriters, risk managers and other experts to provide information and analysis to public policy makers and regulators. Travelers is a leading provider of property casualty insurance for auto, home and business. For more information, visit www.travelers.com.

Copyright Business Wire 2010