Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Tuesday, February 19

Feb 19, 2013


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


10:00 a.m.–Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation (“DWC”) Proposed Rule Hearing.  Proposed repeal of Rule 69L-6.026, entitled “Periodic Reports,” which requires employers that are issued stop-work orders in situations where the assessed penalty exceeds $50,000, to file quarterly compliance reports with the DWC.  The DWC is now able to efficiently monitor such compliance through the use of its data systems, which renders the filing of such employer reports unnecessary.  To view the hearing notice, click here.

10:30 a.m.–DWC Proposed Rule Hearing.  Repeal of Rule 69L-26.003, entitled “Computation of Time,” is proposed because guidelines allowing the DWC to initiate contact with an injured employee or his or her representative were made obsolete by 2002 statutory amendments. To view the hearing notice, click here.

1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.–Citizens Property Insurance Corporation Information Systems Advisory Committee meeting; 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.  Teleconference:  866-361-7525; conference code:  4869641229.  To view the meeting notice, click here.

1:30 p.m.–Florida Workers’ Compensation Insurance Guaranty Association Large Deductible Legislation Workshop.  Tallahassee, Florida.  To view the Workshop notice, click here.

3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.–House Insurance and Banking Subcommittee.  404 House Office Building, 402 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL.  To view the meeting notice, click here.  To view the meeting packet, click here.  Consideration of the following bills:

Daily Florida Insurance-Related News


Insurer Florida Citizens Property Insurance increases hurricane protection

Florida Citizens Property Insurance Corporation will sell $250 million of hurricane coverage to investors in 2013 to recoup some of the cost of covering natural disasters in the state, the insurer said.


Representative Mike Fasano takes Citizens Property Insurance, regulators to task over alternative property insurance coverage

Representative Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, scolded Citizens Property Insurance Corp. and state insurance regulators Monday for not offering an alternative homeowners insurance policy as required by law.


Amid higher premiums, Citizens Property Insurance executives land big raises

When the president of Citizens Property Insurance Corp. learned that his chief financial officer had used corporate funds to finance a luxurious weekend at a $633-a-night resort in Bermuda, he initially described the expenses as “absolutely appropriate.”


Small, large insurers clash over bill adjusting payments to back-up claims fund

A fight is brewing between large insurance companies like State Farm and smaller, Florida-based companies over HB 211, which would allow companies to recoup assessments to the Florida Insurance Guaranty Fund over a longer period of time.


Fire on North Captiva? Only options are spray, pray

Worries are supposed to melt away on the secluded paradise of North Captiva Island, but there is one worry residents shouldn’t forget – fire.


Tom Feeney:  Florida Legislature needs to try something new

As the 2013 Legislative Session approaches, Florida House and Senate committees continue to discuss what can be done to address the cost of homeowners insurance in Florida.


Commentary on Insurance Journal Blog:  Specter of Charlie Crist Could Hinder Citizens’ Property Insurance Reform

A writer with the Insurance Journal is warning readers that the return of Charlie Crist to the governor’s mansion should make industry insiders — especially those seeking to downsize Citizens Property Insurance Corp. — just a little bit nervous.


Senate bill would expand role of agriculture in water supply planning

SB 948 was filed Monday amid concerns about billionaire Frank Stronach acquiring 12,000 acres in Taylor County for a beef cattle ranch.


Florida Governor Rick Scott Wants Foreign Driving Permit Law Overturned

Governor Rick Scott and state lawmakers said Monday they will work to alter or overturn a new law that requires Canadian and other foreign travelers to obtain international permits to drive in Florida.


Florida’s growing hit-and-run problem

Florida has a growing problem with hit-and-run crashes.


Florida’s Division of Workers’ Compensation Conducts Construction Site Statewide Sweep

Florida investigators contacted more than 770 employers and issued 70 citations to construction companies and other businesses that put their employees at risk by failing to carry the required workers’ compensation insurance, the result of a two-day statewide sweep of 375 construction jobsites, according to Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater.


Florida Senators Say No to State Run Health Care Exchange

The committee reviewing how Florida should respond to the federal health-care law agreed Monday not to pursue setting up a state run exchange.


Managed-care dispute resolved, Florida Agency for Health Care Administration says

The Agency for Health Care Administration  announced Friday afternoon it has reached agreements with two companies that filed protests for not being selected to participate in a long-term managed care program.


Florida resident arrested twice for insurance scams

A Florida resident conspired with his wife, a licensed life and variable annuity agent, to sell life insurance policies to two unsuspecting school employees.


Legislature asks state Supreme Court to quash redistricting challenge

The Republican legislative leadership asked the Florida Supreme Court to quash a circuit court challenge to the state Senate’s revised district boundaries Monday, arguing that the justices themselves have already approved the political map used in this past November’s elections.


Mushrooming Tax Identity Fraud in Florida Leads the Nation

Tax identity fraud is sweeping the Sunshine State, a Reuters’ story in Sunday’s Chicago Tribune attests.


Big state pension change analyzed by actuaries

The Republican legislative leadership’s plan to “soft freeze” the Florida Retirement System — making new public employees join a market-based investment pool similar to the 401(k) plans popular in the private sector — will leave public agencies with dwindling numbers of employees contributing money to pay pensions for growing ranks of retirees, an actuarial study released Friday says.


Senator John Thrasher:  Look for a Moratorium Bill on Internet Cafes

Toward the conclusion of Monday’s Senate Gaming Committee meeting, Sen. John Thrasher, R-Jacksonville, guaranteed that the one gambling bill to be introduced in the Legislature during the upcoming session will be legislation to stop Internet cafes in their tracks.


Head of TaxWatch’s Smart Justice quits

The executive director of the TaxWatch Center for Smart Justice since May, Steven Hammond, resigned Monday effective immediately, according to a news release from Florida TaxWatch.


State awards defense grants to Northwest Florida

More than $1.1 million in state defense funding is headed to Northwest Florida to help bolster military bases, stimulate defense research and provide support for wounded service members.


Florida Tourists at Record 89.3 Million

The preliminary numbers from Visit Florida put the number of 2012 visitors to Florida at 89.3 million, surpassing the record-setting 87.3 million tourists recorded in 2011.


The Florida Current’s Session Outlook:  Utilities and Energy

For the past five years there’s been buzz prior to the legislative session about bills that would establish broad energy policy, but not so far this year.


Farmer Confirmed As South Carolina Insurance Commissioner

The South Carolina Senate voted 29-1 to confirm a retired insurance lobbyist as the state’s new insurance commissioner.


Alabama Weighs Grants for Wind-Proofing, Creation of Insurance Research Center

Some of the money that Alabama receives from BP over the Gulf oil spill could end up helping coastal residents make their homes more resistant to wind damage from hurricanes.


California Cites Insurers for Iran Investments

California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones on Wednesday singled out eight insurers licensed to do business in the state that continue to have investments tied to Iran’s energy, military and nuclear sectors.



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