07/07/04 — Smithfield lawyer seeks state insurance post

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Smithfield lawyer seeks state insurance post

By Matt Shaw
Published in News on July 7, 2004 2:10 PM

Cindy Huntsberry brought her campaign for state insurance commissioner to Goldsboro on Tuesday.

Ms. Huntsberry, a Smithfield lawyer, spoke to the Goldsboro Rotary Club in the afternoon. She then came by the News-Argus for an interview.

She faces C. Robert Brawley of Mooresville in the Republican primary election July 20. The winner will face Democrat Jim Long, who's held the office for 20 years, in the Nov. 2 general elections.

Many people don't think much about the state insurance commissioner, she said. "It's one of the lesser-known offices that we vote for, but it probably has one of the biggest impacts on our lives."

She rarely makes a campaign stop without talking to at least one person who is having or has had problems with insurance, she said.

"The situation with insurance availability and affordability has deteriorated over the past eight to 10 years," she said.

Ms. Huntsberry knows several companies that have had trouble getting policies because their offices are east of Interstate 95, she said.

The insurance commissioner could use regulatory powers to encourage insurance companies to write policies in all areas, she said. "If a company wants to do business in this state, they ought to do business everywhere."

The commissioner should also bring in more competition so that people might be able to get better deals on health, casualty and auto insurance, she argues. "The focus of the office ought to be on the consumer."

Ms. Huntsberry is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. C.E. Clayton of Pine Level. She graduated from North Johnston High School in 1967 and received her bachelor's degree from Meredith College in 1972 and her law degree from Campbell University in 1979.

She opened her law practice in Smithfield in 1979. She has been a member of Johnston County's mental health, social services and library boards and currently serves on the industrial and group home boards.

She has two sons, Will, who's a student at N.C. State University, and Thomas, who's a fourth-grader.

For more information, go to www.votehuntsberry.com.