Judge Orders Garamendi to Refund Fees: A Sacramento Superior Court judge ordered state Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi to refund to insurers about $4 million in fees he has collected to help finance his consumer complaint operation. Judge John R. Lewis upheld Garamendi’s authority to impose such fees but ruled that Garamendi failed to follow proper procedure--with advance notice and public hearings--in instituting the June, 1991, levy. The decision, filed Monday, came in a lawsuit by insurers. Under the levy, insurers have been billed $197 to $285 for each complaint lodged against them, regardless of whether it proved justified. Garamendi will appeal the decision, a spokesman said.
From Times Staff and Wire Reports