Jensen Insurance reviews county insurance during commissioners meeting

Dawn Rye | Writer

During last week’s Turner County commissioners meeting, Jensen Insurance of Beresford discussed the county’s annual insurance policy. 

Jensen Insurance owner Mark Jensen said his office has been serving the county for the last 41 years. He explained EMC (Employers Mutual Company), over 100 years old, based out of Iowa, insure multiple public entities. Jensen noted there are 18 counties in the program that allow EMC to focus on counties and provide better service. Jensen said counties receive dividends when there are good years without claims. 

He explained the insurance industry had taken some significant hits in property and automotive liability. According to the EMC statistics, in the third quarter of 2020 in the United States 16 weather disasters exceeded one billion dollars each said Jensen. He noted the auto loss ratio has increased and distracted driving is the biggest issue. Jensen said the rating is based on the experience with the renewal around 10 percent. He explained that the county’s loss ratio last year was 238 percent and breaking even is 60 percent. The three-year average is 137 percent, so it was doubled, and the auto ratio was 647 percent with a sizeable pending case. Jensen said the renew is estimated at 20 percent and considering what the county has ensured, the county is fortunate to have that percentage. 

Chairman Lyle Van Hove asked if the glass repairs count against the county?

Jensen explained EMC has a program to pay for full-chip replacement with no deductible. He said EMC does count glass repairs as a claim, but it’s not a problem for his office. He said the main reason for the increase is from the auto liability and last year it was three percent. 

Commissioner Tony Ciampa questioned if the entities can take classes that might help?

Jensen explained some classes could be taken with the property to make sure values are correct based on the replacement cost. He said the auto policy issues are distracted driving and EMC has a library of safety tapes he recommends. 

Jensen noted that the county’s property coverage is over $11 million, $4 million on the courthouse building and $488,200 on the contents. He said replacement cost for the contents in the courthouse does not include items for earthquake and war. 

He commented another policy is a mechanical breakdown with the phone system, computer systems and copy machines in a lightning storm. 

Van Hove asked what happens if the computer system is hacked?

Zach Jensen said the cyber cover was added to the county policy in 2019. He noted the county is covered for $250,000 for a cyber-attack. Jensen commented there is also a network security defense at $250,000. He said when the coverage was added in 2019, the premium was $482.00 a year. Zach recommends identity recovery to their cyber policy for $200.00 a year.

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