TWIA

Ryan Poppe / TPR News

Difficulties in finding a way to fund the state’s Texas Windstorm Insurance Association and a number of lawsuits has caused Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst to ask a legislative committee to study what shutting the state agency down would look like. 

Dewhurst told the Senate’s Committee on Business and Commerce that the state should no longer be in the insurance business.  

“We always talk about we shouldn’t be competing with the private sector," Dewhurst said. "We’re competing with the private sector; we’re operating a $77 billion insurance company and that scares me.”

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Texas Matters: A court has ruled that privately-run jails are, in effect, governmental bodies when it comes to Texas open records law, so what will be uncovered from the new level of transparency that these institutions must follow? Will the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association be ready to pay out in the event of a destructive hurricane? Also on this show: Whooping crane populations along the coast and a new ocelot kitten in South Texas.

Privately-run jails must now open up records

A Houston attorney in the midst of a separate lawsuit against the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA)  has asked the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate racism in the state agency.   

Houston attorney Steve Mostyn is representing Brownsville School District in their lawsuit against TWIA for the group’s failure to pay on claims related to a 2008 hurricane. In the midst of that suit, Mostyn found hundreds of racist emails from TWIA officials, some related to his clients.