Mass. Governor Stacking Car Insurance Board?

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

There are two sides to the auto insurance business: the repair side and the insurance side, and for the industry to function the needs of both must be balanced. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick is accused of upsetting that balance by replacing a long-standing member of Massachusetts’ Auto Damage Appraiser Licensing Board with an executive from Progressive insurance. Patrick responds to the accusations by arguing that Karen Mills’ replacement of Joseph Valarioti (owner of Central Auto Rebuilders) actually returns balance to the board.

The board is supposed to be staffed by two members of the insurance industry, two members of the repair industry and a neutral chairman. Part of the controversy centers on whether another board member, Joseph Coyne, represents insurers or repairers. Though Coyne operates a repair shop, he also works as an appraiser for an insurance company, and critics allege that he typically comes down on the side of insurers.

Further adding to the brouhaha are recent accusations (headed by the ousted Valarioti) that Progressive engaged in misleading business practices. In May, the company paid $120K for falsely representing other companies’ insurance rates on its website. Valarioti believes that bringing these charges against Progressive led him to be ousted an replaced by Karen Mills, Progressive’s Massachusetts chief claims officer.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Tommy Boy Tommy Boy on Aug 23, 2009

    Follow the money. The guy that owns Progressive insurance is one of those big time liberals that funds left-wing causes and candidates, so he's probably given lots of support to Patrick, who in essence is an Obama Mini-Me. You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours ...

  • GS650G GS650G on Aug 23, 2009

    Isn't Deval Patrick busy determining whether Cambridge police officers are racists or not? Where does he find the time for other matters, like figuring out a way to pay for all the free health care they promised? Do the people of Taxachusetts need this aggravation? Peter Lewis runs Progressive and that is reason alone not to do business with the firm. Your money goes to fund activities that could best be described as subversive. He is deeply involved with Soros, another piece of work. The attraction to Flo is pretty straightforward. Plenty of websites devoted to her but I won't link to them her because of decorum.

  • Notacarboy Notacarboy on Aug 24, 2009

    stuki, ridding the state of this board might lead to a bad prescedent for Coupe Deval. If he rids the insurance board, the rest of his cronies may get nervous about shutting down another. What he's looking to do is grow government, not shrink it. Pay attention...

  • Loverofcars1969 Loverofcars1969 on Aug 24, 2009

    GS650G : August 23rd, 2009 at 11:52 pm You are right he should give that up. There cant possibly be any racist police officers. Sad but the truth of the matter is special interests now control the political landscape in American (hell the world for that matter). I wish Ron Paul actually had a chance.