Statement by Mary Scott, President, AARP Texas
AARP is deeply disappointed in Governor Perry’s veto of HB 1293, a bill which enjoyed broad bipartisan support, was passed unanimously by both House and Senate and even received the endorsement of the insurance industry! Governor Perry’s own state agency – the Texas Department of Insurance – identified annuities as an area in need of new consumer protections. The Governor’s timing couldn’t be worse, and his action will hurt many of our members and Texans generally. Tough economic times tend to bring out the worst behavior in those who prey on unsuspecting consumers for their own financial gain. Hidden fees, excessive surrender charges and slick sales pitches that deceive trusting buyers are all too common consumer complaints today. HB 1293 would have added openness and transparency to these transactions, disclosing important information to consumers. Is the Governor really more interested in blocking people’s access to the courthouse than providing new protections for Texans getting ripped off with annuities? Apparently, the answer is yes. AARP is offended by this veto and will make sure that its members are informed of Governor Perry’s decision.