Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Friday, May 17
May 17, 2013
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There are no Florida insurance-related events scheduled for today.
Wells Fargo Bank and QBE Insurance have agreed to settle a class action lawsuit filed by several Miami-Dade County law firms on behalf of Florida homeowners given force-placed insurance for $19.25 million, South Florida Business Journal’s Brian Bandell reported today, May 17, 2013.
Declaring that the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund will probably be able to pay out on the $17.013 billion of reinsurance it has written for every property insurer in the state (including the state-run Citizens Property Insurance Corp., which has about one-fifth of the market) is an extraordinarily low bar for celebration, writes Ray Lehmann in his Right Street Blog on Insurance Journal.
Operation Sledgehammer, a state and federal investigation, has led to charges being filed against a total of 92 defendants from Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties, reports Paula McMahon for the Sun-Sentinel.
Florida TaxWatch urged Gov. Rick Scott to veto 107 budget items Thursday, but top Florida Senate leaders said the policy-study organization’s annual list of financial “turkeys” is a worn-out publicity gimmick intended more to get publicity for TaxWatch than to safeguard the taxpayers’ money, reports Bill Cotterell for The Florida Current.
- TaxWatch veto recommendations top $100 million
- Water projects left off “turkey” list
- Budget Gets Mixed Reviews
Florida Governor Rick Scott announced he was reappointing State Surgeon General John Armstrong along with Michael Crews and Jesse Panuccio. Crews is secretary of the Department of Corrections. Panuccio is executive director of the Department of Economic Opportunity, the Associated Press reports for the Tampa Tribune.
Murder Rate Up
Florida’s crime rate dropped 6.5 percent in 2012, including a significant decrease in thefts, robberies and burglaries, according to a Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner released Thursday, reports Brendan Farrington for the Associated Press via Tampa Tribune.
THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA’s David Royce reports that a plan by Internet retailing giant Amazon.com to build at least one warehouse in Florida has been scrapped, with the company unable to reach an agreement on when it would have to start collecting state sales taxes, an official in Gov. Rick Scott’s office said Thursday.
Florida’s seaports are set to embark on a massive round of waterfront and transit upgrades as the cargo and cruise facilities are in line for a record-setting year of funding from the Legislature, reports Jim Turner for THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA on FlaglerLive.com.
A local Palm Bay ordinance giving municipal liens on property superiority over mortgages was struck down Thursday by the Florida Supreme Court, reports Gray Rohrer for The Florida Current. However, a bill headed to Gov. Rick Scott’s desk could give local governments more power to address municipal liens.
House Bill 155 was designed to sweep the state of illegal gambling cafes, and it worked. Internet cafes from Jacksonville to Key West have closed, writes Erin Sullivan for the Tampa Bay Times.
Federal weather forecasts for Superstorm Sandy were exceptionally accurate last fall, but the warnings themselves were confusing, an internal review found, the Associated Press reports in Insurance Journal.
Faced with attrition in its captive agencies, and declining number of policies-in-force, Allstate Corp. is turning to a surprising distribution source to drive its brand: independent agents, PropertyCasualty360.com’s Mark Ruquet reports.
Federal legislation would provide incentives for states to enact, enforce modern model code
During Disaster Safety and Mitigation Week (May 13-19) – which is part of National Building Safety Month – the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety is touting the importance of state enactment and enforcement of modern building codes, Newsday reports.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other industry groups, along with states such as Texas and Virginia, have filed nine petitions in recent weeks asking the justices to review four U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations that are designed to cut greenhouse-gas emissions, reports Lawrence Hurley and Valerie Volcovici for Reuters in Insurance Journal.
Insurance Information Institute President Bob Hartwig gave his trademark high energy presentation at today’s NCCI Annual Issues Symposium in Orlando, reports WCI360.com’s Joan Collier.
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