Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Thursday, September 22

Sep 22, 2011


To go directly to the section of your choice, click on a hyperlink below.  Other hyperlinks to meeting information, bills and news are noted in bold type.



Daily Florida Insurance-Related Events


9:00 a.m.–Florida Commission on Hurricane Loss Projection Methodology meeting.  Continuation of 2011 Standards and Procedures discussion and consideration of the RiskLink 11.0.SP2 Model under the 2009 Standards.  Teleconference:  888-808-6959; conference code:  4765251363.  To view the meeting notice, click here.

(CANCELED) 10:00 a.m.–Florida Surplus Lines Service Office National Clearinghouse Committee meeting.  Agenda includes issues pertaining to the proposed national surplus lines tax clearinghouse.  To view the meeting notice, click here.

2:00 p.m.–Florida Department of Financial Services Money Service Workers’ Compensation Fraud Work Group meeting.  To view the meeting notice, click here.



Daily Insurance-Related News


Blog:  State OKs hurricane risk projections that boost insurance premiums

A state panel on Wednesday approved allowing insurers to use a hurricane risk projection method that effectively boosts premiums.


Blog:  Florida hurricane fund chief warns state in danger

Florida’s hurricane fund chief is warning that the state-created fund used to help insurers pay off claims after a big storm is in danger.


Florida Supreme Court Weighs If Public Adjuster Law Limits Free Speech

Public adjusters would have more access to homeowners in the immediate aftermath of a storm if the Florida Supreme Court rules Florida’s current public adjuster law unconstitutional.


United Insurance expands into Rhode Island                                    

United Property and Casualty Insurance Co. won approval from the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation to write policies in the state.


State gets reasonable on sinkhole premiums

In a consumer friendly action, Florida’s Insurance commissioner wisely slashed the proposed premium increases for sinkhole coverage that Citizens Property Insurance Corp. intended to charge home and business owners.


Hillsborough cracks down on staged accident fraud

Hillsborough County commissioners unanimously approved an ordinance today to crack down on phony medical clinics associated with staged-accident fraud.


Feds to state:  Medical loss ratios are coming to Florida

The state’s top Medicaid official tells legislators that the federal government is “pretty much done” discussing whether medical loss ratios will be required and that they will be required of health care plans operating in five counties.


A quarter of Florida workers lack health insurance, Census says                               

A quarter of Florida’s working adults including those with full-time jobs had no health Insurance in 2010, according to figures released today by the U.S. Census Bureau.


Department of Corrections releases revised requests for bids on prison health care

The department withdrew its bid solicitations in August, but efforts to outsource health care in state prisons are back on track.


Medicaid HMO hires former state agency chief as a consultant

Former Department of Business and Professional Regulation Secretary Charlie Liem agrees to act as a consultant to Sunshine State Health Plan.


Health Care Coalition names new president

Karen van Caulil will assume the role of president of the Florida Health Care Coalition in October, the coalition’s board has announced.


Governor Rick Scott Threatens to Close Workforce Central Florida

Citing “ongoing compliance deficiencies,” Governor Rick Scott has put Workforce Central Florida on two weeks’ probation and threatened to shut the agency down if it did not remove its top executives.


Blog:  New state banking chief wants more authority

Florida’s new top banking official is asking lawmakers to give him more flexibility to spend agency money as he sees fit under a pilot that would give him fewer hoops to jump through when it comes to regulating banking, securities and other financial services.


Blog:  Write-in withdraws, Audrey Gibson takes Senate seat early

A write-in candidate that was qualified in a northeast Florida state Senate race is withdrawing, removing the need for a general election next month, the Florida Times-Union reported Wednesday via The News Service of Florida.


Florida’s primary election panel members lean toward earlier vote date

In the runup to Friday’s meeting, committee members deciding on the date say the state may gain more influence in picking a Republican presidential candidate via an earlier vote than by having its full slate of delegates at the convention next summer.


Floridians facing foreclosure could lose their homes faster under plan making rounds in Tallahassee

Floridians facing foreclosure could be stripped of their homes faster and have routine access to the courts limited under a proposal likely to come before Governor Rick Scott and the Legislature in the coming months.


Florida Department of Environmental Protection to propose statewide rule for key environmental permit

A Senate committee this month recommended development of a statewide Environmental Resource Permit rule to eliminate major inconsistencies among the state’s five water management districts.


State Representative Rick Kriseman, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi Clash on Online-Travel Taxes

A St. Petersburg Democrat is calling on the state’s attorney general to require online travel companies, such as Expedia, Priceline and Orbitz, to pay sales taxes on hotel bookings in Florida.


Possible delays for Georgia-Pacific waste pipeline

Controversy surrounding a proposed 40-mile pipeline to reroute paper mill effluent from a small Palatka creek into the large St. Johns River shows no signs of dying down.


Vegas-style casino bill could get Senate vote, Senate President Haridopolos says

The Senate president reshuffled membership on the Regulated Industries committee, potentially clearing a path to the chamber floor for a vote on the much-debated issue that could allow hotel and gambling attractions into Florida.


Florida Department of Transportation’s new boss gets earful from Senate Transportation Committee

Although senators endorsed Ananth Prasad for the job, the panel laden with Tampa-area lawmakers presented a laundry list of complaints and suggestions.


Senator worries new Department of Economic Opportunity to be led by paperwork shufflers

Senator Mike Bennett, chairman of the Senate Committee on Community Affairs, challenges new department chief Doug Darling to hire business veterans with experience in making deals.


Uncertainty surrounds welfare drug testing law

The Florida Department of Children and Families testified before a state House committee Tuesday about the implementation of new drug screening requirements placed on Temporary Assistance for Need Families applicants.


State senator wants Legislature to take a hard look at ‘soft social services’

In a committee meeting today, state Senator Joe Negron made clear that he wants legislators to take a hard look at social services in order to determine whether the state will continue funding them.


Blog:  House fails to pass spending bill, leaves federal disaster relief money in limbo

The House failed to pass stopgap legislation to fund the government through mid-November in a surprising vote late Wednesday, leaving billions in federal disaster relief money tied up for now — and putting politicians from disaster-prone states like Florida in a tough place.


IRS gives employers break on misclassified workers

The Internal Revenue Service is offering a break to employers who come clean about wrongly classifying workers as independent contractors to avoid paying federal payroll taxes, the agency announced Wednesday.


Michigan governor signs health care claims tax into law

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder on Tuesday signed into law legislation, S.B. 348, that will impose a new 1 percent tax on paid health care claims.


Insurers raising auto rates; Companies say revised liability limits part of reason

 Some of the state’s larger auto insurers are raising rates statewide, citing losses and new liability limits implemented at the start of the year.


Former Controller for Texas Insurer Sentenced for Wire Fraud Scheme

The former controller for a Houston-based property/casualty insurance company has been sentenced to 120 months in federal prison for her conviction of conspiracy to commit wire fraud involving almost $1 million in loss to the victim company, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.



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