Biloxi Still Not Entirely Covered - - The News for South Mississippi

Biloxi Still Not Entirely Covered

It seemed to be a repeat of Wednesday's Biloxi council meeting. In a special meeting Thursday, council members asked a lot of questions about buying property insurance, but voted only on partial coverage.

Biloxi's insurance broker Wayne Tisdale assured the council members that a $1.8 million  premium for $60 million of coverage is the best deal they're going to get. 

"Coverage wise, you've gotten more coverage this year with the program I've offered, but there is more premium."

The premium is double what the city paid last year. Noting their options are slim, the council voted to buy windstorm, flood, automobile and equipment coverage. 

Tisdale says, "This is all that's available and I've gone to literally the market over the entire world, Lloyds of London, Bermuda, Asia and domestic and this is all that's available."

What the council stalled on is extra wind storm and fire protection.  

Ward 4 Councilman Mike Fitzpatrick says, "City Hall is valued at $4.7 million. If we have damage more than a million dollars, if we don't buy excess, it's not covered. So we're going to buy a $10 million excess policy that will cover everything over that million dollar mark."

Before the council votes to buy that policy, Fitzpatrick says they want another day to crunch the numbers and to make sure the three council members who were absent from the meeting get all the facts. 

"There's a lot of information on the spread sheets they gave to us, and I want to give George Lawrence the opportunity today to look at these spread sheets that he asked for. All of us did, but he was really adamant about some worksheets," Fitzpatrick says.

The council will save money on business interruption insurance. That's the $10 million protection the city bought last year to guarantee collecting casino tax revenues. That insurance is no longer available.

The council will meet again Friday at 10am to wrap up the insurance deal.

by Marcia Hill

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