Sen. Expects Delayed, But Positive, Results from Anti-Steering Bill
While Sen. Wes Shoemyer, the sponsor of an anti-steering bill in
Missouri, doesn't expect this week's public hearing to necessarily
lead to the passing of the bill, he says a dialogue began with the
hearing that he hopes will have positive results in the future.
The Small Business, Insurance & Industrial Relations Committee reviewed
Senate Bill 775, which would require insurers to inform vehicle
owners immediately on first contact that they have the right to
choose the repair facility of their choice to repair their vehicles,
yesterday during a public hearing.
"We have definitely [received] the attention of the major insurers
in the state of Missouri," he told glassBYTEs.comô/AGRR this
afternoon. "In fact, I had some [insurance company representatives]
come by my office after the hearing. While I do not believe this
bill will move through the Senate this year, they want to sit down
and have some talks."
"If we can identify and work on something and come to some agreement
on steering and how it is presented to claimants to regard to their
choices, I think we can make some moves," Shoemyer added.
Shoemyer said that during the hearing, he compared the automotive
repair industry and the alleged steering that takes place to the
"What I told the committee is that if you think healthcare is screwed
up, [the insurance industry] is trying to HMO the collision repair
industry," he said. "It's managed care. If you think it's screwed
up, well, just wait."
However, the committee is not one that is normally friendly to
bills that legislate the insurance industry, he noted.
"My guess is, to be honest, that the chairman of that committee
tends to be more friendly to the insurance committee than to the
collision industry," he said. "So the greatest opportunity for this
legislation to happen is if another piece of legislation comes up
that I could offer an amendment to."
Shoemyer said he isn't currently watching any particular bills
for this opportunity-but is watching the calendar as various bills
show up on it.
"We don't get the calendar until a day ahead of time," he said.
He also said when the process started for this particular bill
(and others), he remains aware that bills usually are not passed
until one to three years post-introduction.
"We always try to put that whole load of hay in the barn, but the
realization is that we have to go one bale at a time," Shoemeyer
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