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News for Monday, February 19, 2018
Read the latest issue of This Week—the Academy's end-of-week digital newsletter, compiling a week’s worth of news, updates, and media coverage in one convenient, easy-to-use publication. (February 16, 2018)
In the February issue of HealthCheck, the Individual and Small Group Markets Committee sent comments to the U.S. Department of Labor on association health plans, the Retiree Benefits Subcommittee held a teleconference with the U.S. Government Accountability Office on a review of postal retiree health benefits, and a new short-term government funding measure includes several health-related provisions. (February 14, 2018)
Last month the Academy Board of Directors revised the Academy’s meeting policy. (See the news entry from Jan. 31, 2018, here.) The revised policy has one overarching aim—to empower committee and board chairpersons to do their jobs as effectively as possible. The purpose of all Academy meetings is to further the mission of the Academy. It is imperative that chairs have the tools they need to protect the integrity of the Academy process. This is especially critical for those groups responsible for establishing, maintaining, and enforcing our professionalism standards. Meetings of committees and other Academy bodies—other than those of a few committees that have always been closed—remain open to observation provided the observer is deemed to be helpful to the work of the committee. A link to the policy is here.

Why did the Board make this change now? Over the last 18 months, certain observers have used the Board and Committee Meetings Policy to engage in conduct that has tended to chill discussions and debates at the ASB and other Academy committees. In one case, an observer has insisted on attending committee and Board meetings despite threatening legal action against the Academy. The Board responded appropriately by striking a balance between transparency, which has always been important to the Academy, the need to protect the independence and objectivity of all Academy bodies, and the need of those committees to have a robust deliberative process with free and frank exchanges of ideas. The revised policy does precisely that by giving officers and chairpersons the freedom to admit observers who will be helpful to their respective committees while at the same time giving them the necessary tools to protect the committees’ work.

The Academy is aware that an actuary has begun a campaign to enlist members in a petition drive to amend the Academy bylaws to reverse the Board’s decision. For more information about the reasons for this petition campaign, please also see this letter to the actuary’s attorney about the nature and basis of her requests. (February 12, 2018)
Read the latest issue of This Week—the Academy's end-of-week digital newsletter, compiling a week’s worth of news, updates, and media coverage in one convenient, easy-to-use publication. (February 09, 2018)
Senior Property and Casualty Fellow Kevin Ryan testified before the Maryland House Economic Matters Committee, commenting on legislation to prohibit the use of occupation, education, gender, and marital status as factors in determining private passenger automobile insurance rates. (February 08, 2018)
Read the latest issue of This Week—the Academy's end-of-week digital newsletter, compiling a week’s worth of news, updates, and media coverage in one convenient, easy-to-use publication. (February 02, 2018)
The January Actuarial Update covers the first webinar in the joint series by the Academy and the Canadian Institute of Actuaries, which outlined the organizations’ roles in their respective countries. Also in this issue, the Academy released its year-in-review legislative and regulatory alert; a federal court dismissed a lawsuit against the Academy in a discipline case; Professionalism Vice President D. Joeff Williams reviews the purpose of the annual conflict-of-interest and continuing education acknowledgments; and the “Professionalism Counts” column, “New Standards for the New Year,” by Actuarial Standards Board Chairperson Beth Fitzgerald, highlights several new actuarial standards of practice. (January 31, 2018)
At its January meeting, the Academy Board of Directors updated its existing meetings policy to ensure that the objectivity and independence of the Academy continue in our public policy and professionalism work. The work of Academy volunteers and committees needs to be done in a deliberative environment that is robust, frank, and considers diverse sources of information and different perspectives, free from any specific interests of the employers of its members or of any other special interest group or organization. The revised policy will clarify and strengthen the Academy’s efforts to continue the quality of work on which our reputation is built with the integrity that is expected. The updated policy has been posted to the Academy Policies and Guidelines section of our website. (January 31, 2018)
Read the latest issue of This Week—the Academy's end-of-week digital newsletter, compiling a week’s worth of news, updates, and media coverage in one convenient, easy-to-use publication. (January 26, 2018)