Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Thursday, September 6

Sep 6, 2012


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


11:00 a.m.–Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (“Citizens”) Market Accountability Advisory Committee meeting; Teleconference: 866-361-7525; participant code:  7849939192#.  To view the meeting notice, click here.

1:00 p.m.–Citizens Consumer Services Committee meeting; Teleconference:  866-361-7525; participation code: 6487811620#.  To view the meeting notice, click here.

2:30 p.m.–Citizens Depopulation Committee meeting; Teleconference:  855-312-8651; participation code:  4458606638#.  To view the meeting notice, click here.



    Daily Insurance-Related News


    Audit of Citizens Property Insurance mimics board members’ complaints over rates

    An operational audit of Citizens Property Insurance Corp. released Wednesday by Auditor General David Martin reiterated what some Citizens board members have been saying for months – that its premiums are too low to entice private insurers to take over its policies.

    • To view the audit, click here.


    Regulators set public hearing for Citizens Property Insurance

    Policyholders with state-run Citizens Property Insurance facing a double-digit rate hike, or worse, will have a chance to voice their concerns at a public hearing in Miami two weeks from now.


    Victims win new drywall ruling

    A U.S. federal judge has ruled that a Chinese drywall maker must face claims over its allegedly tainted product, which has been blamed for causing foul odors, the failure of appliances and health problems.


    78,000 African land snails caught in Florida

    In an aggressive effort to keep an invasive snail species from making a permanent home in Florida, 78,000 giant African land snails have been captured in the past year, state agriculture officials said Wednesday.


    State suggests new ruling for Keys live-aboards  

    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commissioner Richard Corbett cited the “pirate-like mentality” of Florida Keys live-aboard boaters before he voted in favor of a new set of rules for vessels moored off the Keys.


    Column:  An agent speaks about homeowners insurance

    Homeowners insurance clearly is one of the top issues facing Florida today, and its importance was underscored by our close encounter with Tropical Storm Isaac.


    Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater Appoints Jay Etheridge as Deputy CFO over Law Enforcement

    Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater today announced the appointment of veteran law enforcement officer and Florida Department of Law Enforcement Chief of Investigations Jay Etheridge as Deputy CFO over Law Enforcement.


    Jacksonville could face new budget hole over worker compensation costs

    Jacksonville could face a new multimillion-dollar budget shortfall because of a torrent of employee disability claims for heart disease and hypertension that has surprised city officials, a City Council panel was told Wednesday.


    Aetna sues Jacksonville, says city’s health insurance provider improperly picked

    Aetna Life Insurance Co. is suing Jacksonville over the city’s decision to have Florida Blue provide its health insurance, a job Aetna had been doing since 1999.


    Health plans ready to vie for Medicaid contracts in Florida

    With Florida gradually moving toward a statewide Medicaid managed-care system, 14 health plans are ready to compete for contracts to provide long-term care to seniors.


    Florida Collision Repairer Gets Progressive to Cover Short-Pay

    After filing an individual lawsuit on behalf of his customer against Progressive for the insurer’s short pay of “necessary and reasonable” charges, Collision Concepts owner Eddie Quintela of Delray Beach, Fla., has announced that Progressive has agreed to pay the shortfall.


    United Insurance Holdings Corp. Appoints B. Bradford Martz as Chief Financial Officer

    United Insurance Holdings Corp., a property and casualty insurance holding company, announced today the appointment of B. Bradford Martz, CPA, as its Chief Financial Officer, effective October 1, 2012.


    Feds OK Florida early voting plan for 5 counties

    U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder agreed Wednesday to accept Florida’s revised early-voting plan for five counties covered by the federal Voting Rights Act.


    New lawsuit challenges Florida Senate redistricting

    Voting-rights groups Wednesday filed another challenge to the newly redrawn Florida Senate map.


    State expected to avoid budget shortfall next year 

    Florida’s need to make deep budget cuts because of the recession may finally be over.


    Florida Public Service Commission kicks off nuclear cost recovery hearing by deferring $9 million in Crystal River costs

    The Florida Public Service Commission on Wednesday kicked off a hearing on nuclear power costs being requested by utilities by agreeing to a Progress Energy Florida motion to delay consideration of $9 million in costs associated with its Crystal River nuclear plant. 


    More than 600 State Officials, Staff Failed to Filed Financial Disclosure

    The Florida Commission on Ethics has started to impose $25-a-day fines on 632 current and former state and local elected officials, government staff and appointed officials for failing to submit financial disclosure forms by July 1.


    Florida tomato growers say Mexican imports killing their profits

    Florida tomato growers say they’ll be out of business in a decade if rules for Mexican imports don’t change.


    Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater’s Jim Moran Institute Small-Business Forum Ready to Go in Tampa

    Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater will host the 2012 Small-Business Leadership Forum, in partnership with The Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship, at Florida State University on Thursday and Friday in Tampa.


    New York Times:  With Lax Regulation, a Risky Industry Flourishes Offshore

    The hedge fund industry has been rushing headlong to open Bermuda-based reinsurers.


    Texas windstorm forum raises questions

    Builder:  Buyers pay more for a home built to the latest standards but do not see a return in the form of lower windstorm premiums, a common gripe among policyholders who pay the same rate as those in homes built decades ago.


    Louisiana Court Upholds $257.7 Million Jury Verdict Against Pharmaceuticals

    Louisiana’s 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal has upheld a $257.7 million jury verdict in a lawsuit brought by Attorney General Buddy Caldwell against Janssen Pharmaceutical and Johnson & Johnson for defrauding the state’s Medicaid program, the attorney general’s office announced.


    Assurant Says Smaller Force-Placed Book Frees Capital

    Assurant Inc. will have more capital to deploy as its business covering foreclosed homes shrinks amid an improving housing market, Chief Executive Officer Robert Pollock said.



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