HARTFORD, CT —For almost seven years he hosted a weekly political talk show on Cablevision and now he’s Gov. Ned Lamont’s nominee for Insurance Commissioner.
Andrew Mais, a Wilton resident who has spent the last eight years at the financial consulting firm of Deloitte “providing industry-leading thought leadership and insight on regulatory affairs,” was nominated Friday by Lamont.
Before Deloitte, Mais worked for four years for the New York State Insurance Department where he was the director of public affairs and research.
“Andrew will bring to this position proven leadership ability and a broad understanding of industry and regulatory issues that will help achieve the crucial balance we need to ensure that consumers are protected and have access to affordable and reliable insurance coverage, while at the same time supporting the continued growth of this sector of our economy,” Lamont said in a press release.
Sen. Matt Lesser, D-Middletown, who co-chairs the Insurance and Real Estate Committee, said the position of Insurance Commissioner is “critically important for Connecticut’s economy and also as we work to make sure Connecticut can be a national leader on the issue of health care reform.”
Former Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s Insurance Commissioner Katharine Wade stepped down in December. Paul Lombardo, the chief actuary for the department, has been acting commissioner.
Wade, a former Cigna executive, was criticized for her ties to the insurance industry.
Consumer advocates have been vocal about their desire to change state law to require the Insurance Department to consider affordability in its rate review process for health insurance. The Insurance Department has opposed the proposal. It also opposed legislation that allowed pregnant women to sign up for health insurance if they didn’t have any upon learning of their pregnancy.
There is also a pending lawsuit regarding the Insurance Department’s refusal to share information about the regulatory process behind two failed mergers of insurance giants Aetna and Cigna. Even though the merger between Aetna and Humana and Anthem and Cigna never went through, the Insurance Department is appealing the Freedom of Information Commission’s ruling to disclose the information.
The Insurance Department regulates 105 insurance companies in Connecticut.
Mais will begin serving as the commissioner-designate on March 4. His nomination will be sent to the General Assembly for its approval.
Earlier in the day Friday, Lamont nominated Seila Mosquera-Bruno of Milford to Housing Commissioner.
Lamont has five more vacancies to fill, including the commissioners of Public Health, Department of Social Services, Education, Agriculture, and Motor Vehicles.