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Upshur Co. commissioners looking at insurance carriers

by James Fisher

REGIONAL WRITER

BUCKHANNON -- Upshur County commissioners are looking for a way to cut costs in their property and liability insurance coverage.

Last week, commissioners met with Andy Moore of Accordia, the county's insurance broker, who said insurance premiums would be going up by 12 percent. The increase is not because of claims, he said, but because the county's carrier, St. Paul Insurance Co., was raising rates company-wide.

"It's a considerable increase," said Commission President Donnie Tenney. "He said he will go back to the company, because he felt that because we've been so good and have a good history, we might be able to get a decrease."

Tenney also said commissioners are exploring the possibility of putting their insurance package out to bid to see if a lower rate can be offered by another company.

"We got a lower quote last year, but the coverage wasn't as good, so we decided not to go with it," Tenney said. "We have to be able to balance the coverage with a payment we can afford."

Commissioner Stephen Abel, one of two new commissioners, said he thought re-bidding the coverage was something important for commissioners to do. He said he believed it was "fiscally responsible" for commissioners to find adequate coverage for the best rate.

Even though commissioners may be changing insurance carriers, Tenney said the county is in no danger of losing their insurance coverage. The anniversary date of the policy is at the end of the year, he said, and commissioners have a bit of time to bid the coverage before the next premium payment is due.

Regional writer James Fisher can be reached at 626-1446 or by e-mail at jfisher@exponent-telegram.com.

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