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A man of many hats

Shumaker must be versatile at the state rating bureau Joe Shumaker has had a long career with the Mississippi Rating Bureau, where he began working at age 20. He currently wears three hats as manager of the three separate entities at the bureau. There’s the Mississippi Rating Bureau, established by state law in 1924, which administers the other two organizations; ...

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Number Crunching

Actuaries provide a valuable service for insurance, other sectors What is an actuary and what do they do? These mainstays of the insurance industry are not crunching numbers with a magical twist; they’re grounded in mathematics, logic and statistics. They’re also listed on job-rating lists as one of America’s top 10 best jobs. Furthermore, the road to becoming an actuary is ...

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Maintaining the status quo

Mississippi Association of Self Insurers’ members thriving Self insurers in Mississippi are alive and well. In spite of a recovering economy and some employment problems, these not-for-profit insurers and members of the Mississippi Association of Self Insurers are thriving, according to Dan Gibson, executive director of MASI. “Our members are doing well even though it’s a tough time for employers ...

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Insurance rates hinge on local standards

Economy could force changes in urban and rural fire operations Steps taken by Mississippi’s state government during the last 23 years are credited with keeping today’s home and business fire insurance rates stable. But budget problems in urban fire departments and manpower shortages in rural ones threaten the hard-won stability. As the recession lingers, localities having paid, or “career,” fire ...

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RAND proposals designed for new thinking on coastal storm insurance

Research organization sees lack of progress on Gulf Coast property insurance challenges,  details ideas for avoiding post-Katrina missteps The next time a strong hurricane or series of hurricanes hammer Mississippi’s coastal region as they did in 2004-2005, some changes in the structure of wind and flood insurance must be in place, says the RAND Corporation in an in-depth study funded ...

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Coastal American set to grow as coastal insurer

New insurance firm staking its viability on belief water — not wind — is biggest threat to Gulf homes A little more than seven months after it began providing wind and flood coverage to homeowners along Mississippi’s coast, Coastal American Insurance Co. is ready to take on several thousand new policyholders, says Ned Dolese, a founder of the company who ...

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Proximity pays OFF

Fire Ratings Bureau more concerned with nearness of fire services than number of homes to be served Want to pay less for fire insurance? Move next door to a fire station, even if the neighborhood is jam packed with dwellings. In fire insurance, as in real estate, location is everything. When Joe Shumaker and his staff at the Mississippi State ...

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A fire station near every home

Long-ago funding revamps help lower insurance premiums A couple of decades ago, Mississippi set a goal of putting a fire station within five miles of every home in the state. “I think we’re very close to that,” said Larry Barr, state fire coordinator for the Mississippi Department of Insurance’s Division of Fire Service Development. Two key actions by state government ...

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Wait and see

Employees, bosses still in the dark about impact of healthcare reform on paychecks Changes to the nation’s healthcare laws are coming as soon as Sept. 23, while others won’t take effect in 2014. Renee Gibbons, an employer benefits specialist for Galloway Chandler McKinney Insurance in Columbus, said many of the company’s small business clients are forced to take a wait-and-see ...

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A thoughtful pause — Coast cities reflect and recover with multiple projects

Coast cities reflect and recover with multiple projects Many residents and officials will pause to observe Sunday’s fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Among them will be mayors of the Coast’s 11 municipalities who can measure the progress of recovery by looking back at the tremendous tasks after Aug. 29, 2005. Pascagoula Mayor Robert Maxwell says the greatest loss sustained by ...

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