senate Bill S3271

Requires all motor vehicle insurers to file annual detailed financial and claim data statements with the superintendent of insurance

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 15 / Feb / 2011
    • REFERRED TO INSURANCE
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO INSURANCE
  • 12 / Mar / 2012
    • NOTICE OF COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION - REQUESTED
  • 12 / Mar / 2012
    • COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES

Summary

Requires all motor vehicle insurers to file annual detailed financial and claim data statements with the superintendent of insurance; all such statements shall be made available to the public.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A631
Versions:
S3271
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Rules
Law Section:
Insurance Law
Laws Affected:
Add ยง342, Ins L
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Cycle:
S7531, A10738

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S3271

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the insurance
law, in relation to requiring all
motor vehicle
insurers to file annual financial
statements and detailed claim data
with the superintendent of insurance

PURPOSE OF BILL:
The bill expands upon current insurance reporting
laws by providing for more detailed reporting requirements of
automobile insurers' "financial statements" and "closed claims" data.
This enhanced data collection will provide lawmakers with a source of
reliable and accessible data that will better enable them to evaluate
automobile insurance and assist in providing an optimal product to
New York citizens.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS OF BILL:
The proposed language provides for a publicly accessible and neutral
method for the systematic collection of automobile insurers'
financial and closed claims data. The supplemental financial
disclosure requirements stipulate that insurers must provide detailed
information concerning all sources of "income" including, but not
limited to, data on premiums received, investment income, and profit
from the sale of assets.
Detailed information regarding expenses must also be provided,
including, expenses actually incurred and paid, normal business
expenses, salaries, commissions, consulting fees, legal expenses, and
advertising costs. A synopsis of the total claims or settlements paid
in each financial statement and specific data on claims that have
been settled with or without a payment (closed claims) must also be
provided.

Additionally, all submitted data must be signed by the insurer's chief
executive officer, attesting its' accuracy. Civil penalties will be
assessed against companies that fail to comply with any of the
provisions of the bill. The proposal also indicates that the
insurance department must make all information publicly available to
consumers on the department's web site.

JUSTIFICATION:
Automobile insurance is a vital part of the New York State economy and
is of high importance to the citizens of New York. Personal
automobile insurance premiums in 2008 were $9.8 billion. Commercial
automobile insurance premiums in 2008 were $2.0 billion. Automobile
liability insurance protects against the possible adverse
financial consequences of being held liable for damage to another
person or another's property. Personal injury protection provides
first party medical benefits when an injury arises from an automobile
accident, as well as, providing other financial benefits such as
partial wage loss reimbursement. Physical damage insurance covers
damage to the policyholder's own vehicle; which is often one the
largest financial assets of a person; as well as being vital to
other aspects of a person's life such as transportation to and from


work. A failure to have fairly priced automobile insurance with
adequate benefits from solvent insurance companies could have dire
consequences for New York.

Given the significance of automobile insurance to New York State and
its citizens, the State has a compelling public interest in ensuring
that the parties with a stake in the transactions; policyholders,
insurance companies and the general public; are all treated fairly.
It is also important to ensure that the benefits to citizens are
adequate, that insurance companies have the opportunity to earn a
fair profit, that insurance companies will be able to make good on
the promises contained in insurance policies, and that insurance
companies operate in a fair efficient manner. In order for lawmakers
to be able to carefully evaluate various alternatives for achieving
these objectives, it is vital that information about automobile
insurance be available.

There are many entities that give the insurance industry's perspective
on automobile insurance. These entities include Insurance Services
Office (ISO), the Insurance Research Council (IRC) and the Insurance
Information Institute (III). ISO submits filings on behalf of
insurance companies to the Department of Insurance. The IRC is funded
and operated by a consortium of insurance companies which publishes
"studies" which merit careful analysis. A recent IRC publication
regarding automobile injury claims(1) stated "Shifts in treatment
alternatives and increased costs have led to the continued escalation
of medical care expenses," "Total claimed losses and total claim
payments have grown faster than inflation, spurred by increases in
medical expenses" and "Attorney involvement is associated with
extensive medical treatment, elevated claimed losses, and lower net
compensation for claimants."

The III acts as an advocate for the insurance industry. A recent
document by the III(2) claims that the New York No-Fault system is in
"crisis" and "out of control." The III then suggests insurance
industry "solutions" to these alleged "problems." However, it is
impossible to discern the veracity or accuracy of the contentions of
the IRC or the III absent analysis of their underlying data. All of
these insurance industry organizations have access to detailed
financial and claim data that insurance companies do not make
available to the public.

As things currently stand, no independent and neutral mechanism exists
to determine the root cause of declared insurance "crises" and policy
cancellations. And, because the insurers typically refuse requests to
produce more detailed data, lawmakers and consumers have to rely on
the industry's reports to make policy decisions.

Clearly, independent, objective and accurate data is needed so
lawmakers and the public can conduct sound analyses in reaching a
public policy decision that impacts millions of New York citizens.
For example, more detailed claim data would help in evaluating the
insurance industry claims that the no-fault system is out of control
and that benefits to consumers need to be restricted. In the absence
of this basic data, it is impossible for lawmakers and consumers to
engage in rational decision-making about insurance industry proposals
that would severely limit consumer rights.


In order to level the playing field, and have a vibrant public
discussion and analysis of the issues involving automobile insurance,
it is critically important that all parties involved in the
discussion of automobile insurance have access to comprehensive
information. This bill takes a step in that direction by starting to
make publicly available certain information that insurance companies
have resisted disclosing. This bill will provide for the vigilant
financial examination of insurer activities and allows consumers to
monitor insurance industry for fair treatment.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2009-10: S.7531/A.10738 (Weinstein) - Referred to Insurance

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:
None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
Immediately.

FOOTNOTES:
(1) Insurance Research Council, Auto Injury Insurance Claims:
Countrywide Patterns in Treatment Cost, and Compensation, 2008
Edition, January 2008, at 4 - 5. This report states that detailed
data on more than 1,500 New York automobile claims was collected,
but the IRC has not made that information public so that other
entities could perform their own analysis.

(2) Insurance Information Institute, New York PIP Insurance Update, Is
New York's No-Fault Crisis Returning?, November 5, 2009.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  3271

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            February 15, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. HASSELL-THOMPSON -- read twice and ordered printed,
  and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Insurance

AN ACT to amend the insurance law, in relation to  requiring  all  motor
  vehicle  insurers  to  file  annual  financial statements and detailed
  claim data with the superintendent of insurance

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  Legislative  intent.  The  legislature  hereby  finds and
declares that insurance companies issuing motor vehicle policies in this
state owe a duty to those they insure and to those who may in the future
be insured by them, to fully disclose in a public and transparent manner
all elements relating to their financial condition  and  solvency.  Such
obligation  is  essential  in maintaining the public's inherent right to
know the details and specifics of such  insurer's  expenses  and  claims
history on a global basis so, as consumers, they can make a reasoned and
rational selection of the insurer with which they intend to do business.
As  premiums  escalate,  it  is more incumbent on such insurers to honor
this obligation by making the public aware of the rationale they use  in
determining  the premiums they charge, and it is the sense of the legis-
lature that where the data used is available, it should be disclosed  in
an open and public manner.
  S  2. The insurance law is amended by adding a new section 342 to read
as follows:
  S 342. FINANCIAL STATEMENT AND DETAILED CLAIM DATA TO  BE  FILED  WITH
THE  DEPARTMENT.    (A) FOR PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, THE TERM "INSURER"
SHALL MEAN ANY PERSON, CORPORATION, ASSOCIATION OR OTHER BUSINESS ENTITY
AUTHORIZED TO ISSUE A MOTOR VEHICLE INSURANCE POLICY IN THIS STATE.
  (B) ON OR BEFORE APRIL FIRST OF EACH YEAR, EVERY INSURER SHALL PROVIDE
THE SUPERINTENDENT WITH A DETAILED FINANCIAL STATEMENT TO SUPPLEMENT AND
EXPAND UPON THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THE STATUTORY ANNUAL  STATEMENT
FOR  THE  MOST RECENTLY CONCLUDED CALENDAR YEAR. THE FINANCIAL STATEMENT

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD03114-01-1

S. 3271                             2

SHALL CONTAIN INFORMATION ON A COMBINED BASIS FOR ALL LINES OF INSURANCE
AS WELL AS INFORMATION SEPARATELY FOR EACH OF  THE  FOLLOWING  LINES  OF
INSURANCE: (1) PRIVATE PASSENGER AUTOMOBILE OTHER LIABILITY, (2) PRIVATE
PASSENGER  AUTOMOBILE  PERSONAL INJURY PROTECTION, (3) PRIVATE PASSENGER
AUTOMOBILE PHYSICAL DAMAGE, (4) COMMERCIAL AUTOMOBILE  OTHER  LIABILITY,
(5) COMMERCIAL AUTOMOBILE PERSONAL INJURY PROTECTION, AND (6) COMMERCIAL
AUTOMOBILE  PHYSICAL DAMAGE.  THAT FINANCIAL STATEMENT SHALL INCLUDE THE
ENTIRETY  OF  ITS  BUSINESS  ACTIVITIES  CONDUCTED  IN  THIS  STATE,  OR
CONDUCTED  OUTSIDE  THIS STATE, BUT HAVING A NEXUS TO INSURANCE POLICIES
OR CONTRACTS OF INSURANCE INSURING  PERSONS  OR  RISKS  IN  THIS  STATE,
CONSISTENT  WITH THE PROCEDURES FOR DETERMINING NEW YORK STATE INSURANCE
BUSINESS FOR STATUTORY ANNUAL STATEMENT REPORTING PURPOSES. SUCH  STATE-
MENT SHALL BE IN A FORM DETERMINED BY THE SUPERINTENDENT. THE FORM SHALL
BE  SUFFICIENTLY  ITEMIZED  IN  A  MANNER THAT ALLOWS FOR AN ACTUARIALLY
SOUND ANALYSIS OF THE INCOME REALIZED BY THE INSURER  FROM  ALL  SOURCES
DURING  SUCH  YEAR,  INCLUDING  BUT  NOT LIMITED TO PREMIUMS, INVESTMENT
INCOME, PROFIT FROM SALE OF ASSETS AND ANY OTHER CATEGORY OR  CATEGORIES
OF  INCOME  AS  DETERMINED  BY  THE  SUPERINTENDENT  TO REFLECT THE FULL
DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS OF THIS SECTION. AT A MINIMUM, SUCH  INFORMATION
SHALL CONSIST OF THE ITEMS SET FORTH IN THE STATEMENT OF INCOME, EXCLUD-
ING  THE  CAPITAL  AND  SURPLUS ACCOUNT SECTION OF THE PROPERTY/CASUALTY
STATUTORY ANNUAL STATEMENT, AS APPLICABLE  TO  THE  INSURER'S  NEW  YORK
STATE  BUSINESS,  AS  WELL  AS  THE OTHER INFORMATION DELINEATED IN THIS
SUBSECTION. SUCH FINANCIAL STATEMENT SHALL ALSO CONTAIN A  COMPREHENSIVE
AND  DETAILED DISCLOSURE OF THE INSURER'S EXPENSES ACTUALLY INCURRED AND
PAID DURING SUCH CALENDAR YEAR, TO  INCLUDE  NORMAL  BUSINESS  EXPENSES,
SALARIES,  COMMISSIONS,  CONSULTING  FEES,  LEGAL  EXPENSES, ADVERTISING
COSTS AND ANY OTHER CATEGORY DEEMED PERTINENT  TO  THE  INTENT  OF  THIS
SECTION. AT A MINIMUM, THE EXPENSE INFORMATION REQUIRED SHALL CONSIST OF
THE  ITEMS SET FORTH IN THE UNDERWRITING AND INVESTMENT EXHIBIT - PART 3
- EXPENSES OF THE PROPERTY / CASUALTY  STATUTORY  ANNUAL  STATEMENT,  AS
APPLICABLE  TO  THE  INSURER'S  NEW YORK STATE BUSINESS. WITH RESPECT TO
SALARIES (INCLUDING ALL OTHER FORMS OF COMPENSATION), EACH INSURER SHALL
ITEMIZE THE SALARY OF THE TWENTY MOST HIGHLY  COMPENSATED  EMPLOYEES  OF
SUCH  INSURER DURING SUCH YEAR, PROVIDED THAT THE NAME OF SUCH EMPLOYEES
NEED NOT BE DISCLOSED. SUCH FINANCIAL STATEMENT SHALL ALSO  PROVIDE  THE
PUBLIC  WITH  A  SYNOPSIS OF CLAIMS OR SETTLEMENTS PAID PURSUANT TO SUCH
POLICIES OR CONTRACTS, LISTING THE TOTAL OF SUCH CLAIMS AND  SETTLEMENTS
BY TYPE OF INSURANCE OR THE RISK INSURED. AT A MINIMUM, THE CLAIM INFOR-
MATION  REQUIRED  SHALL CONSIST OF THE ITEMS SET FORTH IN THE EXHIBIT OF
PREMIUMS AND LOSSES OF THE PROPERTY / CASUALTY STATUTORY  ANNUAL  STATE-
MENT, AS APPLICABLE TO THE INSURER'S NEW YORK STATE BUSINESS AND IDENTI-
FIED  AND  CATEGORIZED SEPARATELY FOR EACH ZIP CODE IN THIS STATE.  SUCH
FINANCIAL STATEMENT SHALL BE SIGNED AND ATTESTED AS FULL,  COMPLETE  AND
ACCURATE  BY  THE  CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER OF THE INSURER, AND HE OR SHE
SHALL BE HELD PERSONALLY RESPONSIBLE WITH RESPECT TO THE ACCURACY OF THE
CONTENT OF SUCH STATEMENT. THE  SUPERINTENDENT  SHALL  PROVIDE  INSURERS
WITH  A  METHOD  TO SUBMIT THEIR FINANCIAL STATEMENTS ELECTRONICALLY VIA
THE INTERNET, WHICH METHOD SHALL INCLUDE INSTRUCTIONS  RELATING  TO  THE
USE  OF AN ELECTRONIC SIGNATURE WHICH SHALL BE SUBJECT TO, AND SUBMITTED
IN ACCORDANCE WITH  SECTION  THREE  HUNDRED  SIXTEEN  OF  THIS  ARTICLE;
PROVIDED,  HOWEVER,  THAT NO EXCEPTION AUTHORIZED IN SUCH SECTION MAY BE
REQUESTED OR GRANTED.
  (C) ON OR BEFORE APRIL FIRST OF EACH YEAR, EVERY INSURER SHALL PROVIDE
THE SUPERINTENDENT WITH DETAILED CLOSED CLAIM INFORMATION FOR  THE  SAME
LINES  OF  INSURANCE  PROVIDED FOR IN SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION FOR

S. 3271                             3

THE MOST RECENTLY CONCLUDED  CALENDAR  YEAR.  UNTIL  THE  SUPERINTENDENT
PROMULGATES  DATA  COLLECTION FORMS AND PROCEDURES FOR PRIVATE PASSENGER
AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE, DATA SHALL BE COLLECTED USING, AT A  MINIMUM,  THE
MOST  RECENT  PUBLICLY  AVAILABLE  FORMS  USED BY THE INSURANCE RESEARCH
COUNCIL FOR ITS AUTO INJURY SURVEY. THE SUPERINTENDENT MAY REQUIRE ADDI-
TIONAL INFORMATION BEYOND THAT WHICH IS CONTAINED IN SUCH SURVEY  IF  HE
OR SHE DEEMS IT NECESSARY AND WARRANTED.  INSTEAD OF COLLECTING INFORMA-
TION  FOR ALL PRIVATE PASSENGER AUTOMOBILE CLAIMS THE SUPERINTENDENT MAY
COLLECT DATA FOR A STATISTICALLY VALID SAMPLE  OF  CLAIMS.  THE  MINIMUM
SAMPLE  SIZE SHALL REPRESENT FIVE PER CENTUM OF THE NUMBER OF CLAIMS FOR
EACH YEAR. UNTIL THE SUPERINTENDENT PROMULGATES  DATA  COLLECTION  FORMS
AND  PROCEDURES  FOR  COMMERCIAL  AUTOMOBILE  INSURANCE,  DATA  SHALL BE
COLLECTED USING INFORMATION  WHICH  MAY  BE  AVAILABLE  FROM  ANY  OTHER
SOURCE. FOR COMMERCIAL AUTOMOBILE CLAIMS, INSTEAD OF COLLECTING INFORMA-
TION  FOR  ALL  CLAIMS THE SUPERINTENDENT MAY COLLECT DATA FOR A STATIS-
TICALLY VALID SAMPLE OF CLAIMS. THE MINIMUM SAMPLE SIZE SHALL  REPRESENT
TEN  PER  CENTUM  OF THE NUMBER OF CLAIMS FOR EACH YEAR FOR SUCH LINE OF
INSURANCE. SUCH DETAILED CLAIM DATA SHALL  BE  SIGNED  AND  ATTESTED  AS
FULL, COMPLETE AND ACCURATE BY THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER OF THE INSUR-
ER,  AND  HE OR SHE SHALL BE HELD PERSONALLY RESPONSIBLE WITH RESPECT TO
THE ACCURACY OF THE DATA. THE DETAILED CLAIM DATA SHALL BE SUBMITTED  IN
THE SAME MANNER AS PROVIDED FOR IN SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION.
  (D)  THE SUPERINTENDENT SHALL, IN BOTH WRITTEN FORM AND AS PART OF THE
DEPARTMENT WEB SITE, MAKE SUCH FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND  DETAILED  CLAIM
INFORMATION  AVAILABLE  TO  THE  PUBLIC.  THE DETAILED CLAIM INFORMATION
SHALL BE PROVIDED IN AGGREGATE FORM FOR ALL  INSURERS  COMBINED  WITHOUT
ANY  IDENTIFICATION  OF  A SPECIFIC CLAIM TO A SPECIFIC INSURER. NONE OF
THE PUBLICLY AVAILABLE DETAILED CLAIM  INFORMATION  SHALL  IDENTIFY  THE
INDIVIDUAL  INSURER,  DEFENDANT  OR PLAINTIFF ASSOCIATED WITH THE CLAIM.
SUCH FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND DETAILED CLAIM INFORMATION SHALL BE DEEMED
A PUBLIC DOCUMENT AND NO PERSON SHALL BE REQUIRED TO FILE A REQUEST  FOR
SUCH FINANCIAL STATEMENTS PURSUANT TO ARTICLE SIX OF THE PUBLIC OFFICERS
LAW  IN ORDER TO RECEIVE A COPY THEREOF, BUT UPON REQUEST AND PAYMENT OF
THE FEE FOR COPYING SUCH DOCUMENT, IT SHALL BE PROVIDED. WITH RESPECT TO
THE ELECTRONIC COPY OF SUCH  FINANCIAL  STATEMENTS  AND  DETAILED  CLAIM
INFORMATION, WHICH SHALL BE ACCESSIBLE ON THE DEPARTMENT'S WEB SITE, THE
DEPARTMENT  SHALL  HIGHLIGHT THE AVAILABILITY OF SUCH INFORMATION TO THE
PUBLIC ON SUCH WEB SITE, AND THE LINK TO EACH INSURER'S FINANCIAL STATE-
MENT AND THE AGGREGATED DETAILED CLAIM INFORMATION SHALL  BE  ACCESSIBLE
IN A SIMPLE AND EASY MANNER. BOTH THE FINANCIAL STATEMENT AND AGGREGATED
DETAILED CLAIM INFORMATION ON THE DEPARTMENT WEB SITE SHALL BE AVAILABLE
IN  EXCEL  FORMAT,  IN  ADDITION  TO ANY OTHER FORMAT THE SUPERINTENDENT
DETERMINES IS APPROPRIATE.
  (E) ON OR BEFORE JULY FIRST OF EACH  YEAR,  THE  SUPERINTENDENT  SHALL
ISSUE  REPORTS SUMMARIZING AND EXPLAINING THE INFORMATION COLLECTED FROM
THE FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND THE DETAILED CLAIM INFORMATION.  COPIES  OF
SUCH  REPORTS  SHALL  BE  FORWARDED  TO  THE  TEMPORARY PRESIDENT OF THE
SENATE, THE SPEAKER OF THE ASSEMBLY AND THE CHAIRS OF  BOTH  THE  SENATE
AND  ASSEMBLY  INSURANCE  COMMITTEES. SUCH REPORTS SHALL BE PUBLIC DOCU-
MENTS AND SHALL BE ACCESSIBLE BOTH IN PAPER COPY AND ON THE DEPARTMENT'S
WEB SITE.
  (F) WHERE AN INSURER FAILS OR REFUSES TO  PROVIDE  THE  SUPERINTENDENT
WITH  A  FULL  AND  COMPLETE DISCLOSURE AS REQUIRED BY THIS SECTION, THE
SUPERINTENDENT SHALL TAKE SUCH ACTION HE OR SHE DEEMS NECESSARY TO BRING
THE INSURER INTO FULL COMPLIANCE.  SUCH ACTION MAY INCLUDE IMPOSITION OF
A CIVIL PENALTY OF UP TO FIFTY THOUSAND  DOLLARS  ASSESSED  AGAINST  THE

S. 3271                             4

INSURER  FOR  EACH VIOLATION, TEMPORARY SUSPENSION OF ANY RIGHT TO ISSUE
ADDITIONAL POLICIES OR CONTRACTS UNTIL THE INSURER  BRINGS  ITSELF  INTO
FULL  COMPLIANCE, AN AUDIT OF THE INSURER'S RECORDS BY THE DEPARTMENT OR
ITS  DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE TO OBTAIN THE INFORMATION AND WHICH AUDIT
SHALL BE PAID FOR BY THE INSURER, OR ANY OTHER CIVIL REMEDY  THE  SUPER-
INTENDENT   DEEMS  WARRANTED  OR  NECESSARY  UNTIL  SUCH  INSURER  FULLY
COMPLIES. IN ADDITION THE OFFICER WHOSE SIGNATURE  IS  AFFIXED  TO  SUCH
STATEMENT MAY BE PERSONALLY PENALIZED TO THE SAME EXTENT.
  (G) THE SUPERINTENDENT MAY PROMULGATE SUCH RULES AND REGULATIONS HE OR
SHE  DEEMS  NECESSARY FOR THE PROPER ADMINISTRATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF
THIS SECTION, AND SUCH RULES AND REGULATIONS MAY BE  PROMULGATED  ON  AN
EMERGENCY  BASIS IF THE SUPERINTENDENT WARRANTS SUCH ACTION TO BE NECES-
SARY.
  S 3. Severability. If any item, clause, sentence, subparagraph, subdi-
vision or other part of this act, or  the  application  thereof  to  any
person  or circumstances shall be held to be invalid, such holding shall
not affect, impair or invalidate the remainder of this act but it  shall
be  confined  in  its  operation to the item, clause, sentence, subpara-
graph, subdivision or other part of this act directly involved  in  such
holding, or to the person and circumstances therein involved.
  S 4. This act shall take effect immediately.

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