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SOUTHLAND PREVIEW / The Business Week Ahead

Los Angeles County

October 10, 1994|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Earthquake Insurance Plan: The California Insurance Department will hold public hearings at its Downtown Los Angeles offices Wednesday and Thursday on Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi's proposal to use the California Fair Plan--the industry-supported pool for high-risk property insurance--as a mechanism to offer stand-alone earthquake policies. Nearly all of the major U.S. insurance companies, which face total losses of more than $10 billion from the Northridge quake, have stopped offering homeowners and earthquake insurance in California. Garamendi and other officials believe the solution to the problem is to create a national disaster insurance fund to cope with catastrophes ranging from floods to hurricanes to forest fires to earthquakes. But until such a program can be enacted, Garamendi proposes ordering the Fair Plan to offer "monoline" earthquake policies to all Californians.

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