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June 11, 1998 

Council: Without MHC, insurance jobs, taxes have uncertain future

Thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in state and local tax revenues face an uncertain future unless lawmakers pass a bill to let mutual life insurance companies change their corporate structure, the Council said Wednesday.

Unless lawmakers pass this bill, New York's mutual life companies will have strong incentives to create new jobs and to move existing ones out of state, said Business Council President Daniel B. Walsh. The bill would give these companies "operating flexibility not now available in New York," he said.

Legislation that would allow the policyholders of a mutual life insurance company to decide if the company may reorganize as a mutual holding company (MHC) has stalled in the state Assembly. When American General of Texas bought New York-based U.S. Life, 1200 jobs were eliminated, including 250 in New York, Walsh noted.

A report by the Life Insurance Council of New York shows that New York's four largest mutual life companies employ 12,260 people and paid over $80 million in state and local taxes last year.

Click here for The Council's news release on MCH legislation.