Chaney faces 2 challengers in re-election bid

Tupelo, Miss. — Louis Fondren, a Democrat from Gautier, and Barbara Dale Washer, the Reform Party candidate from Hattiesburg, seek to dislodge incumbent Mike Chaney as Mississippi insurance commissioner.

Chaney, 67, a Republican from Vicksburg, served in the State Legislature before being elected commissioner in 2007.

He says his accomplishments on the job are good reasons to keep him for another four years. His opponents say more can be done to keep insurance rates low enough.

Chaney counts among his achievements digitizing the department’s records, updating the agency’s website, recruiting 140 new insurance companies to the state, completing a nationally recognized $1 million hurricane wind mitigation study, helping create a $20 million grant-based mitigation program for Gulf Coast homeowners and giving back policyholders more than $11 million.