If approved in November, Proposition 33 would allow auto insurers to offer “loyalty discounts” to new customers that have had continuous coverage for the past five years.
….The initiative is a reincarnation of Proposition 17, which was shot down by a narrow margin in June 2010. It now rises from the dead, equipped with some changes that proponents hope will sway voters.
Opponents, meanwhile, argue that Prop. 33 is just like its predecessor and will negatively impact people who use public transit or bike, among other nondrivers. The measure would allow insurance companies to raise rates for people who have clean records but stopped driving over the past five years.
On the surface this does seem to give insurers more power than they already have. Some changes have been made from the previously defeated bill:
The rewritten Prop. 33 does now allow exemptions for military personnel, individuals who have been unemployed for up to 18 months and children living at home with their parents. And the initiative would provide currently uninsured drivers a discount proportional to the number of years they have had insurance in the previous five years.
Whether or not voters will be convinced that the new bill is enough of a departure from the old version, or that the new bill will actually benefit more people than it hurts will only be known once the vote is over.