Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon ends re-election campaign
Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon announced today that he will not seek re-election, citing a desire to step away for his abrupt change of plans.
In an interview last month with InsuranceNewsNet, Donelon, 78, was adamant about running for a fifth full term. Louisiana is in the midst of another insurance crisis brought on by costly storm and hurricane events.
Donelon hosted a news conference today to update the results of a $45 million incentive program passed by the Louisiana Legislature last month. Nine insurers have applied to the program seeking $62 million in incentives, he said. To get the incentive money, insurers would have to write a certain amount of premium in the state.
As the press conference neared the end, Donelon announced his decision to step away.
"I am obviously 78 years old, and have spent almost 50 years serving the public of Louisiana," Donelon said. "While very healthy, and continuing to exercise, I want to enjoy the remaining years of my life with my family and hopefully some new hobbies."
In addition, Donelon said he wants to "remove politics from the vitally important upcoming legislative session, where many significant issues affecting our state and the future of our state's property insurance market will be debated and hopefully decided, to improve that market."
The second-longest-serving insurance commissioner in the United States, Donelon assumed office in 2006 and won five successive terms. Mike Kreidler of Washington is the only senior insurance commissioner, having been in office since 2000.
InsuranceNewsNet Senior Editor John Hilton covered business and other beats in more than 20 years of daily journalism. John may be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @INNJohnH.
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