Senator Dan Wolf
Massachusetts Cape & Islands District
Senator Wolf testifies in favor of Cape Cod Homeowners Insurance Legislation

BOSTON—Senator Dan Wolf (D-Harwich) testified at today’s hearing of the Joint Committee on Municipalities and Regional Government in favor of Senate bill 980—an Act Creating the Cape & Islands Property Insurance Commission. The bill, filed by Senator Wolf, would warrant a study on property insurance rates in Barnstable, Dukes, and Nantucket counties.

The legislation would establish a commission comprised of local officials and advocacy groups to review the feasibility of creating a property insurance entity managed by the county to serve the Cape and Islands. The commission would also produce a cost/benefit analysis and examine the legal and regulatory changes that would be needed to create a property insurance office.

The senator expressed at the hearing that having a more granular understanding of what insurance rates do relative to losses incurred would ensure that residents of the Cape are receiving equitable service for their contribution.

“Relative to the state, if you look at Barnstable, Dukes, and Nantucket counties, our loss ratios are significantly lower than the rest of the Commonwealth.”

Senator Wolf’s initiative stems from increasing concerns about the rising costs of homeowners insurance in the region and the lack of transparency on the part of private insurers. “We should be looking for more opportunities to have more accountable and responsive entities that are providing homeowners insurance.” said Senator Wolf. “If you think in terms of health insurance, this would be the equivalent of a public option,” the senator added.

“In the course of the twenty-seven years I’ve lived in Harwich, the cost of insurance has gone up by multiples,” Senator Wolf said in his testimony. “That is an experience which is shared by most homeowners in the Commonwealth.”

Senator Wolf also noted out that the lessons learned from this study would be beneficial to all state legislators and their constituents when considering alternative homeowners insurance options.