SCC News


Information Resources Division: 804-371-9141



Get updates on the latest in Utility, Financial, and General news


RICHMOND –The State Corporation Commission (SCC) is taking steps to create the Commonwealth Health Reinsurance Program (CHRP), which would begin on January 1, 2023. The CHRP is designed to increase affordability in the individual health care insurance market with a goal of decreasing premiums.

Pursuant to the Affordable Care Act, the CHRP requires federal approval of an application request for a State Innovation Waiver. Under the waiver, insurance carriers will be reimbursed for a proportion of the claims of covered individuals with high annual costs. In addition to these federal pass-through funds, the program will be funded through state general funds as authorized by the Virginia General Assembly.

A draft waiver application is being prepared for meeting the January 1, 2022 deadline to submit a request to the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.

Information about the program is available on the SCC website at: The draft application will be available for review and comment by October 1, 2021.

Two public hearings are scheduled on Thursday, October 14, 2021 – one at 10 a.m. and the second at 7 p.m. Both will be webcast.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the SCC will hold telephonic hearings for the receipt of public comments. Public witnesses wishing to provide oral comments must pre-register by October 12, 2021 in one of three ways:

  • Complete a public witness form for case number INS-2021-00110 on the SCC’s website at:
  • E-mail the same information (PDF version on the same website as above) to
  • Call the SCC at 804-371-9141 during regular business hours and provide your name and the phone number you wish the Commission to call to reach you during either hearing.

For those who prefer, there is an opportunity to provide comments in writing on the waiver application request. Written comments may be submitted through the SCC’s website by November 1, 2021, at If unable to submit electronically, send comments by U.S. Mail to Clerk of the SCC, c/o Document Control Center, P.O. Box 2118, Richmond, VA 23218-2118 and refer to case number INS-2021-00110.


Contact: Ford Carson, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Natural disasters can take a major toll on businesses and sidetrack the best laid plans and projections. Many businesses do not reopen following a natural disaster and some fail within one year after disaster strikes.

Whether you are an individual or a business, you are vulnerable to natural disasters that may include hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, wildfires and earthquakes. Even disasters far away can impact your business by disrupting supply chains and communications. Small businesses are particularly vulnerable when it comes to natural disasters since they often have fewer resources, locations and employees to help them become operational again.

Advance planning is essential to safeguard employees, protect assets and minimize disruptions to your business. Having an emergency disaster plan and a business continuity plan in place, as well as adequate insurance coverage, can reduce the risk to a business and help it recover faster.

The State Corporation Commission's (SCC) Bureau of Insurance (Bureau) strongly encourages small businesses to review their insurance coverage regularly and adjust it, as needed. When evaluating a business’s insurance needs, consider the possibility of a natural disaster. Know what your policies cover and how much money you may need to make repairs and pay employees, creditors and yourself in the event of a disaster. "How you plan for and respond to disasters can determine whether your business survives," said Virginia Insurance Commissioner Scott A. White. “Protect yourself and your business against the unexpected by having the right insurance coverage and updating it regularly.”

Consider whether additional or separate coverages are needed. For example, separate insurance coverage may be needed for certain types of disasters such as floods and earthquakes because these typically are not covered by standard business insurance policies. Similarly, businesses may need to buy separate automobile insurance for cars and other vehicles because standard business policies cover only real property. Also consider business interruption insurance, which may help cover the loss of income that a business suffers after a disaster.

Small business owners also can take additional steps to protect their employees, property and operations, such as the following:

  • Determine whether the business is in an area at high risk for certain types of disasters, such as floods or fires.
  • Develop and update business continuity plans to share with employees. Make sure the plan includes current employee contact information, backup vendors or suppliers and a temporary relocation site.
  • Develop a system to communicate with employees, vendors, suppliers and customers and procedures for work processes and payroll during a disaster or business interruption. Keep in mind that employees might be working from different locations and that internet and other critical business services might not be working normally.
  • Have disaster provisions at the workplace, along with evacuation maps and access to a working radio and mobile apps to receive instructions from local authorities.
  • Compile an inventory of computer hardware as well as other assets and equipment and keep it in a safe place. Back up all personal and company data on a regular basis in case information is lost during a disaster.
  • Keep copies of important records (such as building plans, insurance policies, bank accounts, employee contact information and other priority documents) in a safe, waterproof and fireproof place. Keep a set of records online (employing strong security measures) or at an off-site location.
  • During a disaster, depending on the risks, ask employees to shelter in place or evacuate immediately.
  • After a disaster strikes your business, contact your insurance agent or company immediately and ask what information is needed to file a claim.

The Bureau of Insurance offers free guides specifically geared to businesses. To learn more, contact the Consumer Services Section of the Bureau of Insurance Property and Casualty Division toll-free at 1-877-310-6560 or in Richmond at 804-371-9185 or visit

For additional emergency preparedness information relating to disasters, visit


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – The Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) has approved in part and denied in part an environmental rate adjustment clause (E-RAC or rider). The rider recovers environmental compliance expenses associated with federal rules regulating the disposal of coal ash at two of the company’s power plants located in West Virginia.

These power plants, the Amos and Mountaineer plants, are coal-fired generation facilities that produce electricity to serve Appalachian Power’s Virginia customers. The SCC reviews and approves the share of those environmental compliance expenses that Virginia customers pay through electric rates.

The SCC approved a $27.44 million Virginia revenue requirement for the first year of the rider. The rider will be adjusted annually to reflect actual and projected expenses associated with compliance costs. The rider will increase the monthly bill of a typical Appalachian Power residential customer by $2.17 starting October 1.

The SCC denied approximately $4.2 million of expenses associated with Appalachian Power's proposed investment in the Amos and Mountaineer power plants to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency's Steam Electric Effluent Limitations Guidelines ("ELG"). The Commission found that Appalachian Power did not meet its burden of proving the reasonableness and prudence of these costs at this time.

In its final order, the Commission said, “We find it is critically important to analyze the overall impact of this investment on both customer rates and reliability, and that [for this specific expense] the instant record is currently lacking in both regards.”

The Commission reiterated in its order its sensitivity to the effects of these rate increases particularly considering the economic impacts associated with COVID-19. The Commission, however, said it must follow the laws applicable to any rate case as well as the findings of fact supported by the evidence.


Contact: Ken Schrad, 804-371-9858

Case Number PUR-2020-00258
Order Granting Rate Adjustment Clause

RICHMOND – The 2021 Atlantic hurricane season already has had a busy start with eight named storms and one reaching hurricane strength. The State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) Bureau of Insurance (Bureau) reminds Virginians that late August to early October is often the most dangerous and active time for tropical storm activity – and the potential property damage those storms can cause.

If you have not already reviewed your property insurance, the Bureau urges Virginians to do so now as the hurricane season is underway. Whether you’re a homeowner, renter or business, protect yourself financially by making sure you have the coverage you need before disaster strikes.

Hurricane season officially runs from June 1 to November 30. Even areas hundreds of miles from the coast can be impacted by the high winds, heavy rains and flooding that accompany hurricanes and tropical storms. You may have a difficult time increasing your insurance coverage once a hurricane develops in the Atlantic and until the threat has passed, so review your coverage now and make any necessary changes.

“Disasters can happen anywhere and anytime. Don’t wait until it’s too late to protect yourself and your property from a hurricane or other disaster,” said Virginia Insurance Commissioner Scott A. White. “Assess your risk now and make sure you have the coverage you need before a storm begins to brew.

The Bureau encourages Virginians to talk to their insurance agent or company if they have questions about what is and is not covered, how to reduce property damage and what to do if damage does occur.

Most homeowners, renters and commercial insurance policies do not cover losses due to flooding. Talk to your insurance agent about flood insurance or visit the National Flood Insurance Program’s website at to learn more about protecting your home or business from damage due to floods, surface water or storm surge. There is typically a 30-day waiting period for a new flood insurance policy to take effect.

The Bureau also encourages Virginians to create a detailed home inventory with photos, videos and serial numbers of your belongings. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) free smartphone app can facilitate this process. Place your insurance policies and home inventory in a safe place and take them with you if you must evacuate. These records will contain your policy numbers and the phone numbers of your insurance companies in case you have questions or need to file a claim.

If your property is damaged by a hurricane, contact your insurance agent or company as soon as possible. To protect your property from further damage, make necessary emergency repairs. Document all damage to your property and include photographs, notes and repair-related receipts.

Policyholders should consider the following questions related to potential hurricane damage when reviewing their policies:

  • Does your homeowners policy contain a special deductible for wind or hurricane losses? These deductibles are applied separately from any other deductible on a homeowners policy and may be written as a flat amount, such as $1,000, or applied to a loss as a percentage of the insurance coverage on the dwelling.
  • Does your homeowners policy provide coverage for such things as sewer backup? Most homeowners policies do not provide coverage for sewer backup, but policyholders may purchase additional coverage for this.
  • Are vehicles covered in the event of a hurricane or windstorm? If you have other-than-collision (or comprehensive) coverage for your vehicle under your automobile policy, your vehicles generally will be covered for flood and wind damage.

To learn more, contact the Bureau of Insurance Property and Casualty Division toll-free at 1-877-310-6560 or in Richmond at 804-371-9185. The Bureau’s specially trained staff can assist consumers with their insurance-related questions and concerns. The Bureau also offers free consumer guides for homeowners and commercial property owners with information about what to do when a disaster strikes. These are available on the disaster readiness section of its website at

For additional emergency preparedness information relating to hurricanes and other types of disasters, visit the Virginia Department of Emergency Management website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Starting September 11, 2021, permissive 10-digit dialing will begin for Virginians living in the 757 area code region. This is the first step in a February 2020 relief plan approved by the State Corporation Commission (SCC) to phase in the new 948 area code. During the next six months, local calls can be made with either 7 or 10 digits, and all calls that are local will continue to be local even though you dial 10 digits.

The 757 area code encompasses the vast majority of the Hampton Roads metropolitan area including Williamsburg, Franklin and Suffolk in the west, and Virginia Beach, Norfolk and the Eastern Shore to the east.

In the coming months, the inventory of available phone numbers with "757" as the area code is expected to run out. The SCC approved an overlay, which is the addition of another area code (948) to the same geographic region served by an existing area code (757). Beginning May 9, 2022, new telephone lines or services may be assigned numbers using the new 948 area code.

The good news: residents and businesses that already have phone numbers will get to keep them. No one’s 757 phone number will change.

Consumers should start practicing dialing phone numbers using all 10 digits because, beginning April 9, 2022, all local calls made in the 757 area code will not be connected if seven digits are dialed.

You must use 10 digits (3-digit area code + the 7-digit telephone number) as of next April 9. One step people can do to prepare for the switch is to update their cell phone contacts now, so that phone numbers they call regularly already will have the area code attached.

For more information on this topic, see:


Contact: Ford Carson, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – August 11 is the day recognized in the Commonwealth to remind Virginians of the importance of always contacting Virginia 811 before you dig. Virginia 811 is the one-call notification center to report planned excavations in the Commonwealth created by Virginia’s utilities to protect their underground facilities.

Contacting Virginia 811 is a simple, no-cost process, with two convenient ways to do so. You can go online at to disclose a digging project taking place at a single address; this online service is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You may also call 8-1-1 Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., excluding legal state and national holidays. Emergency notification service is available 24/7, 365 days a year as well.

Know What’s Below. Contact Virginia 811 before you dig, and Dig with C.A.R.E!

C.A.R.E. means:

  • Contact Virginia 811 before you dig.
  • Allow the required time for marking.
  • Respect and protect the marks.
  • Excavate carefully.

Help keep Virginia’s underground utility infrastructure damage-free and our communities, business districts and environment safe by taking this important first step.

To learn more about “Digging with C.A.R.E.” and Virginia’s underground utility damage prevention program, contact the SCC’s Division of Utility and Railroad Safety at 804-371-9980 or visit


Contact: Ford Carson, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – After anywhere from months to more than a year of virtual learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many students will soon be heading to college campuses for in-person instruction during the fall semester. In addition to new courses, teachers, friends, surroundings and living accommodations, it also can mean new insurance needs.

The State Corporation Commission’s Bureau of Insurance encourages Virginians to make sure their back-to-school checklist includes a thorough review of their own and their student’s insurance needs. “Know before they go what your student’s insurance needs will be and make sure they have the right coverage,” said Virginia Insurance Commissioner Scott A. White. “Protect yourself and your family by reviewing insurance coverage for your student’s health, auto, living space and belongings and make sure they understand the coverage.”

The Bureau offers the following insurance considerations for parents and students:


College students have several options for getting health insurance. Under the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA), students may stay on their parents’ health insurance until age 26. If your student remains on your health insurance policy, make sure he or she has a copy of all insurance cards and understands what services are covered and how to obtain referrals, if necessary, before seeking treatment. Under some health insurance policies, your student would need to find a physician or hospital within the carrier’s provider network – except for emergency care – or pay more out of pocket.

Students who do not have health insurance through a parent's policy, or who have limited coverage due to provider networks or service areas, may opt to purchase a student health insurance plan through their college or university. Students also can apply for a private health insurance plan through the health insurance marketplace at Students may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period for health insurance at


College students often take many valuable items with them to school including computers, printers, televisions, bicycles and mobile phones. Consider how much it would cost to replace everything in your student’s dorm or apartment should a theft or disaster occur.

For students who live in on-campus student housing, their parents’ homeowners or renters policy may cover their belongings if they are stolen or damaged. However, there may be limits to the amount of coverage provided for such items. Some items such as jewelry or expensive electronics may require special coverage. In the event of a loss, policy deductibles may also apply.

Students living off-campus should consider renters insurance, an inexpensive form of coverage that protects personal property and insures the tenant in case someone is injured while on their leased premises. Landlords’ policies generally only cover the structure, not the possessions of renters. Renters insurance premiums vary depending on the location and size of the rental unit and the value of your possessions.

Encourage your student that, no matter where he or she lives, it’s important to make a list of his or her belongings. An inventory will help you and your student determine how much insurance is needed and, if a loss occurs, the inventory can be used to file a claim. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners offers a free smartphone app that makes creating an inventory easy. Parents may also want to use this opportunity to update their own home inventory as well.


For students planning to take a car to school, parents should ask their insurance agent or company about coverage availability and rates for the city and state where the college is located before deciding whether to keep the student’s car on the family policy. Also, make sure you know that state’s minimum requirements for auto insurance coverage. Students who maintain good grades may be eligible for a good student discount on the vehicle’s insurance premium.

Students whose names are on the title for a car must purchase their own policy. However, they may be able to stay on their parents' policy if their parents own the vehicle they will use at school. Let your insurance agent know where the vehicle will be stored if the address is different from what is on the policy.

The Bureau of Insurance encourages parents and students to shop around and compare policy provisions and premiums. Read any insurance policy carefully and make sure you understand exactly what is covered, exclusions, deductibles and limits. If you have questions or concerns, contact your insurance agent or company.

For more information, contact the Bureau of Insurance toll-free at 1-877-310-6560 or in Richmond at 804-371-9741 or visit its website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs) are popular options for many investors who are saving for retirement and other financial goals. They often offer a cost-efficient way to invest in professionally managed portfolios of securities. As with any investment, however, investors should understand their benefits, risks and costs.

When comparing funds, investors should review each fund’s prospectus, shareholder reports and portfolio holdings and evaluate their overall risk/return profiles. Expense ratios also are an important consideration when reviewing funds since, over time, they may reduce a fund’s earnings. Investors can find a fund’s expense ratio on the brokerage company’s website, by searching for the fund’s ticker symbol or in the fund’s prospectus (under Shareholder Fees).

An expense ratio is a fund’s total annual operating expenses expressed as a percentage of its assets. For instance, a one percent expense ratio means that for every $1,000 you have invested, you'll pay $10 in expenses per year.

Mutual funds and ETFs charge shareholders an expense ratio – which is how they pass on a fund’s operating costs to their shareholders on an ongoing basis. The expense ratio reflects all recurring fees a fund charges, such as management fees, administrative fees and distribution or service fees.

Since operating expenses are deducted from a fund’s assets, the return to investors is reduced. Thus, investors should be aware of how operating expenses could impact their investment for any particular fund.

In addition to expense ratios, investors may pay other fees depending on which fund type they choose. Investors may also pay brokerage fees or fees to purchase or redeem shares of a fund (sales load). These are separate from the expense ratio.

Ron Thomas, director of the State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) Division of Securities and Retail Franchising, encourages investors in Virginia to always consider the total fees and expenses they will be charged in connection with any investment. “When investing, remember that all fees and expenses you pay reduce the return on your investment,” he said. “Make sure you consider a fund’s expense ratio as well as sales loads and any other fees when evaluating the overall cost of investing in that fund. Even small differences in fees and expenses can mean a big difference in your returns over time,” he said. 

Thomas encourages Virginians to understand the basics of mutual funds and ETFs before investing in them, noting, however, that questions and inquiries regarding fees associated with mutual funds and ETFs should be directed to the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as the SEC has authority over such matters. Still, as with any type of investment, he reminds investors to protect themselves financially by defining their objectives when investing, balancing risk versus reward, researching details about an investment, understanding all costs associated with buying, owning and selling that investment, and regularly monitoring their investments.

To learn more about expense ratios, visit the North American Securities Administrators website. For additional resources regarding securities and investing, or to find out if an investment or the person offering it are properly licensed or registered in Virginia, contact the Division of Securities and Retail Franchising in Richmond at 804-371-9051 or toll-free at 1-800-552-7945, or visit its website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Although the arrival of summer means sun, fun and travel for many, it can also mean increased risks. Among other things, these risks can include stolen luggage and other belongings; collisions on busy highways; illness while away from home; back yard pool and grilling mishaps, or misadventures on boats, jet skis, recreational vehicles (RVs) and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs).

The State Corporation Commission's (SCC) Bureau of Insurance reminds Virginians to make sure their summer to-do list includes checking with their insurance agent or company to ensure they have the appropriate insurance coverage in the event of an illness, theft or mishap.

“Whether you are traveling, boating, hosting a summer cookout or installing an underground pool, don’t let a lack of insurance coverage ruin your summer fun and put a strain on your wallet,” said Virginia Insurance Commissioner Scott A. White. “Anticipate summer hazards now and minimize their financial damage by ensuring your insurance coverage is adequate and up-to-date.”

Keep your home, vehicles, belongings and personal information safe, especially when away on vacation. Know how much your auto and homeowners insurance will cover if someone steals your belongings from your vehicle, home or yard. If you plan on hosting an event at your home (such as a yard sale or neighborhood cookout), know what type of insurance you need if a guest is injured or if there’s property damage. Know, too, your insurance coverages if severe summer weather damages your home and vehicles while you’re away. Also, understand any deductibles or coverage limits that may apply.

Whether you are at home or away this summer, update your home inventory. This will help to ensure your homeowners or renters policy provides enough coverage for your belongings. It can also help facilitate the claims process if damage or theft occurs. Separate coverage may be needed for high-cost items such as jewelry, art or electronics. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners' free smartphone app – myHome – makes creating a home inventory quick and easy. This app is available through iTunes and Google Play.

In the event of hurricanes or prolonged heavy rains, keep in mind that homeowners, renters and commercial insurance policies issued in Virginia typically do not provide coverage for damage to your home and belongings due to floods, surface water or storm surges. However, the federal government does sell insurance covering direct flood and flood-related damage to homeowners, renters and businesses in eligible communities through its National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). In most cases, there is a 30-day waiting period for a new flood insurance policy to take effect. To learn more about this program, contact your insurance agent or the NFIP at 1-800-427-4661 or visit Some private insurers offer flood policies, so check with your insurance agent about the availability of a private flood insurance policy. In either case, ask whether your flood policy provides coverage for your personal property.

If you are planning a summer trip, become familiar with your health insurance coverage in case you are injured or get sick and require medical treatment in an urgent care facility or hospital while traveling out-of-state or abroad. Bring health insurance information with you on your trip, such as identification cards and contact details for all family members.

If you’re driving a long distance for vacation or to visit friends and family, make sure your auto insurance policy meets your specific needs before you leave. Check your liability limits to ensure adequate protection against personal injury or property damage arising from an accident while travelling. Keep your insurance company's contact information and a copy of your insurance card with you when you drive and know what to do if an accident occurs.

It you plan on boating or jet skiing, exploring with RVs or ATVs, or hosting a yard sale or pool party, ask your insurance company or agent if you are adequately covered.

For information about a variety of insurance-related topics, contact the Virginia Bureau of Insurance in Richmond at (804) 371-9741 or toll-free at 1-877-310-6560 or visit its website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141


RICHMOND – Each year, seniors lose significant amounts of money due to financial exploitation. Many cases of financial abuse are never reported, which can happen when seniors or those helping them don’t recognize the signs of financial abuse.

Financial abuse can take many forms. Identity theft; online and telemarketing scams; unauthorized use of checking accounts, debit and credit cards, and the abuse of legally granted powers for individual assistance are just a few examples. Perpetrators may be strangers, family members, trusted friends or caregivers, court-appointed guardians, financial professionals or others.

On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (June 15), the State Corporation Commission reminds financial professionals and all Virginians to look for signs of elder financial abuse.

“Senior financial exploitation can happen anywhere, any time and to anyone,” said Ron Thomas, director of the State Corporation Commission’s Division of Securities and Retail Franchising (Securities Division). “Perpetrators often strike when seniors are most vulnerable such as during a health crisis or after the death of a loved one. For many seniors, social isolation and increased reliance on the internet for many daily activities only compound the problem.”

Thomas encourages Virginians to recognize the warning signs of senior financial exploitation and steps that can be taken to report such abuse. Some red flags that may signal financial abuse are as follows:

  • Surrendering passwords and control of finances to a new or overly protective friend or caregiver;
  • Unusual activity in bank or investment accounts, including large, frequent or unexplained withdrawals or transfers between accounts;
  • Sudden changes to beneficiary designations or to legal or financial documents such as power of attorney, wills, trusts, retirement accounts or insurance policies, or suddenly missing documents;
  • Unexplained financial activities, such as checks made out to cash or written as “gifts;” unusual loans, or disappearance of assets, valuables or securities;
  • Fear of friends or family members, or a sudden change in feelings toward them;
  • A lack of knowledge by a senior about their financial resources or their reluctance to discuss financial matters, and
  • Suspicious signatures on checks or other documents.

Thomas urges Virginians who suspect they or a loved one are the victims of investment fraud or possible senior financial exploitation to contact the Division of Securities and Retail Franchising at 804-371-9051 in Richmond or toll-free at 1-800-552-7945, by email at, or on its website at

The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), of which the SCC Securities Division is a member, also has developed resources to help identify fraud and to provide information on how to report suspected elder financial abuse. These resources are available on NASAA’s “Serve Our Seniors” website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141


previous page arrow 1 2 3 4 5


11 next page arrow


Get updates on the latest in Utility, Financial, and General news