June 14, 2006

Bill Approved To Give Troops Added Protection Against Scams

Crapo supports Banking Committee safeguard measure

Washington, DC â?? Military bases and enlistees received additional protection today to protect them from insurance and other financial scams when the Senate Banking Committee, on which Idaho Senator Mike Crapo sits, approved the Military Personnel Financial Services Protection Act. The legislation addresses a growing problem with scams that target military families and personnel.The bill, S. 418, requires jurisdiction over insurance sales and products on military bases to be under a state insurance regulator; currently there is no oversight on such sales on military bases. Also, the Department of Defense would be required to keep a list of individuals who have been barred from military bases because of abusive sales tactics. Additionally, the bill would protect military families by preventing investment companies from issuing periodic payment plan certificates, the mutual fund-like investment product with extremely high first year costs. â??We must take every opportunity to keep our servicemen and women and their families protected from unscrupulous individuals who seek to take advantage of others,â?? Crapo said. â??Scam artists and unsavory business operators sometimes prey on military personnel because they may be serving far from family and trusted friends or because the head of the household is not present. This legislation puts safeguards in place that will ensure the assistance is there for military personnel and families who may otherwise fall victim to such practices. Putting these provisions into practice is long overdue.â??The bill was approved by the Committee today and will now move to the Senate floor full for further consideration.