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Pet Insurance Bill Provides Important Consumer Protection for Rapidly Growing Market

LOS ANGELES, Calif., June 20 — The California Department of Insurance issued the following news release:

Today Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones and Assemblymember Matt Dababneh held a joint press conference at an off-leash dog park to discuss important pet insurance legislation. Within California’s economy the pet insurance market is rapidly growing and expected to reach $750 million by next year. AB 2056 (Dababneh), sponsored by Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, will add important consumer protections to pet insurance by bringing uniformity to policy language and disclosures increasing transparency in pet insurance policies.

“California has the largest number of insured dogs and cats in the nation,” said Commissioner Jones. “It is essential that consumers purchasing pet insurance understand what they’re getting for their money. When policy
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Ridesharing Bill Cruising Through California Legislature

By Don Jergler | June 17, 2014

A bill to more thoroughly regulate insurance requirements for ridesharing companies is successfully wending its way through California Legislature as insurance associations and representatives for companies like Uber and Lyft try and hash out an uncertain middle ground.

The Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee passed Assembly Bill 2293 on a 7-0 vote on Tuesday. The bill, being carried by Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, D-Concord, is backed by several insurance associations.

AB 2293 has already been approved by the California State Assembly on a 71-0 vote. It addresses a gap in insurance coverage between when a ridesharing provider’s personal auto insurance is in effect and when a transportation network
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California Commissioner Likes Proposed Rideshare Regulations

Published June 12, 2014

California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones on Thursday gave a thumbs up to regulations proposed by California Public Utility Commission President Michael Peevey, which seeks broader commercial insurance coverage for drivers who use  smartphone ridesharing apps from operators like Uber, Lyft and Sidecar.

The regulations proposed Tuesday further define ridesharing operators – transportation network companies – and ridesharing activities and requires a $1 million commercial liability policy to be in place whenever a TNC driver has a smartphone app turned on to accept rides.

“I applaud President Peevey’s proposed decision to make sure that Transportation Network Companies (TNC) like Uber, Lyft and
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​Ridesharing companies Uber, Lyft offer compromise

Staff Writer-Sacramento Business Journal
Jun 3, 2014, 2:51pm PDT UPDATED: Jun 4, 2014, 8:56am PDT

See correction at end of article.

Ridesharing companies Uber, Lyft and Wingz have issued a counteroffer to Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla on legislation that would force drivers to possess commercial liability coverage.

The compromise likely would raise rates for ridesharing customers, but far less than what has been proposed by Bonilla, said a representative for Lyft.

This newest development in the dispute between insurers and ridesharing companies is important because it includes tentative support from MetLife Auto and Home.

The fact that a major insurance company is backing the plan shows that the state’s powerful insurance lobby is not altogether on the
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States Warn of Rideshare Risks for Passengers

published May 28th 2014, 1:52 pm, By Ben Popken

Uber is under siege.

It’s not from a rival company, such as Lyft or Sidecar, because they may be in the same boat. It’s from states who are warning passengers that they may not be covered by insurance if the driver has an accident.

New Jersey last week became the 14th state along with the District of Columbia to issue warnings about the risks of using ride-shares like Uber, Lyft, or Sidecar.

Drawn by the power and ease of summoning a personal driver at the push of a smartphone button, passengers may not think to ask what happens when things go wrong. States,
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California Wildfire Zone Treated to Calmer Weather

May 29, 2014, AP

Weather looks to be friendlier for firefighters today as they hope to fully contain a Central California wildfire that led to the destruction of two homes.

Some 50 residents were allowed to return to their homes Wednesday night, two days after they were told to evacuate when the blaze broke out east of Lake McClure in Mariposa County, sheriff’s officials said.

About 700 firefighters working in steep terrain had the blaze 40 percent contained late Wednesday.

The fire has led to five injuries, including a moderate cut from a chain saw sustained by an inmate who was aiding the effort. Four other firefighters suffered minor injuries. The fire destroyed two
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Having VIN number etched in windshield has advantages

By ANGIE HICKS OF ANGIE’S LIST, Published: Monday, May. 26, 2014 – 5:11 am

As long as you don’t pay too much to get it done, having your vehicle’s identification number etched on its windshield and windows isn’t a bad idea. It might prompt would-be auto thieves to bypass your vehicle and could get you a discount on your car insurance premium, say top-rated auto experts.

In researching this topic, including conducting interviews with top-rated auto glass experts, insurance providers and even a member of a community police department’s crime prevention unit, our team found general support for the concept of etching a vehicle’s
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California Auto Insurance Rates Defy Upward Trend

By Marcy Gordon, AP

While Californians are getting squeezed by electricity costs, they’re getting the best deal in the country on car insurance because of a unique state law, a new study by a consumer group shows.

Auto insurance prices in California declined 4 percent between 1989 and 1998 while jumping an average 38.9 percent nationwide, according to a new survey released by Consumer Federation of America.

Insurance premiums have increased the most in Nebraska, South Dakota, West Virginia, Kentucky and Arkansas, the survey shows. They have increased the least in New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Maine and New Jersey.

Consumers nationwide spend an annual average of more than $700 per
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Viewpoints: More mischief in ‘top-two’ primary system

By Steve Maviglio
Special to The Bee

Published: Friday, May. 23, 2014 – 12:00 am

I have a confession to make. I’m voting for Republican Tim Donnelly for governor in June. Not because I agree with him on any issue. But because I can.

This year’s primary election marks the first time that California’s “top-two” primary system will allow voters to choose any candidate running for the state’s top offices. Voters not aligned with any political party get to vote for the candidate of their choice – without being forced to register with a political party. Yet it also allows Democrats to vote for Republicans, and Republicans to
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TNCs fight for footing in California’s legislature

POSTED ON MAY 21, 2014 BY 

A recent R Street post by Zachary Cohn laid out three steps that transportation network companies like Uber, Lyft and Sidecar should take to solidify their place in heavily regulated environments. One of his recommendations, to “focus on strengthening government relations in their new and existing cities,” is a lesson that TNCs have yet to learn at the state level here in California. If they fail to understand this soon, both they and the state could be worse off for it.

Many of California’s elected officials hew closely to a narrative about the state’s penchant for acting as an incubator to new and exciting
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