New York State
Insurance Department


ISSUED 4/20/2004

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

INSURANCE DEPARTMENT AND NEW YORK PROPERTY INSURANCE UNDERWRITING ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCE AVAILABILITY OF $100,000 IN GRANTS TO HELP QUALIFIED HOMEOWNERS IMPROVE HOME SAFETY
New Grant Initiative Successful In Helping Reduce Home Electrical Hazards

        Superintendent of Insurance Gregory V. Serio and Joseph A. Calvo, president of New York Property Insurance Underwriting Association today announced the availability of $100,000 in new funding to help qualified New York homeowners eliminate electrical hazards in their homes.

        The grants are available to New York Property Insurance Underwriting Association (NYPIUA) policyholders and will help people who are financially unable to independently fund electrical repairs or improvements that would reduce electrical fire hazards.

        "Provide qualifying New York homeowners with the resources they need to eliminate hazards in their home is a win for everyone," said Superintendent Serio. "Nearly 100 New York homeowners have already participated in the program since it began in 2003, and the new funding will help even more New Yorkers repair or upgrade the electrical systems in their homes."

        "It is gratifying that we have been able to help a number of our policyholders improve their electrical systems and eliminate hazards," said Joseph A. Calvo. "Our Board of Directors recognizes the benefit to the Association and to policyholders and has allocated funds to continue the grant program. We expect to provide grants to an additional 100 policyholders during 2004."

        The grants are funded from NYPIUA, an entity comprised of a pool of all insurance companies writing fire insurance in New York State. NYPIUA offers fire and extended coverage to New Yorkers who are unable to obtain such coverage through individual insurance companies.

        Matching grants of up to $1,500 are awarded to qualifying applicants. To qualify for the pilot grant program, policyholders must have been insured by NYPIUA for no less than the past five consecutive years, must be an owner-occupant of a one or two-family home, and must demonstrate financial need.

        In 2003, more than $64,000 was disbursed to 60 policyholders and an additional 38 grants totaling $42,089 have been approved and are awaiting project completion. Additional program information, including applications, are available at http://www.nypiua.com.


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