Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Tuesday, May 13

May 13, 2014


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 (Insurance) Agent and Agency Services Proposed Rule Hearing.  Tallahassee, Florida.  Proposed amendments to Rule Chapter 69B-227, F.A.C., relating to the establishment of requirements and standards for all insurance agent, adjuster, customer or service representative pre-licensing courses.  Amendments to the Chapter would also establish curriculum standards for special designation courses.  To view the hearing notice and full text of the proposed Rules, click here.



    Daily Florida Insurance-Related News


    Flood assistance extended to 2 Panhandle counties

    Federal assistance has been extended to more parts of Florida’s Panhandle, where flooding cleanup continues, The Miami Herald reports.


    Florida sees small break in deluge of rising property insurance rates

    Over the past eight hurricane-free seasons, Florida homeowners have had more to fear from their insurance company than from Mother Nature, Tampa Bay Times’ Jeff Harrington reports.


    Governor Scott Signs Legislation that Creates Sales Tax Holiday for Hurricane Supplies

    Governor Rick Scott, joined by Representative Ritch Workman, local leaders, emergency management personnel, first responders, health and medical professionals, and industry and business representatives, signed House Bill 5601 that cuts more than $121 million in taxes for Florida families and creates a nine-day sales tax holiday for hurricane supplies beginning May 31.


    Deadline for Citizens Property Insurance project bids is June 17

    Citizens Property Insurance Corp. seeks 226,400 square feet of office space in Jacksonville to consolidate its four area offices and specifies the location be within 5 miles of a current office it leases at 7215 Financial Way in Southside.  Karen Brune Mathis reports for the Jacksonville Daily Record.


    Florida’s Brown & Brown acquires AMC, RPI and PacRes

    Brown & Brown of Kentucky has acquired certain assets of Agency Management Corporation (AMC) and Recreation Protection Management (RPI), as part of its strategy to strengthen its footprint in the region, Commercial Lines Insurance Business Review reports.


    Panhandle farmers face planting delays after rains

    Florida Panhandle farmers say recent heavy rains and flooding have kept them from planting some of their most important crops, the Associated Press reports via the Tampa Tribune.


    Florida Speed Limit Hike Bill May Be Scott’s First Veto

    Gov. Rick Scott says he has not decided whether to sign or veto the bill that increases the speed limit on Florida interstates to 75 miles per hour.  But signs are growing that Scott could make the bill (SB 392) a target of his veto pen.  The Bradenton Herald reports.


    Ban in 2016 on septic tank waste disposal now looming as bills fail to pass

    Spreading septic tank waste on land is banned in Florida starting Jan. 1, 2016.  Opponents wanted a year delay and a study of the environmental effects of spreading septic waste on land but their proposals failed during the 2014 Legislative Session.  The Florida Current’s Bruce Ritchie reports.


    Federal agents round up South Florida doctor and others in Medicare fraud takedown

    When about 20 newly arrested Medicare fraud suspects appeared in Miami federal court on Monday, one stood out: Dr. Barry Kaplowitz.  The Miami Herald’s Jay Weaver reports.


    South Florida power line issue places governor, Cabinet, in political quandary

    Governor Rick Scott and members of the Cabinet face what may be the most controversial and politically delicate decision of their term today, when they will decide whether to give Florida Power & Light permission to build two new nuclear power generators and 88 miles of new transmission lines in South Florida.  The Miami Herald’s Mary Ellen Klas reports via the Tampa Bay Times.


    Scott, Rich, Bondi and other Florida candidates report new campaign income

    Monday was the deadline for political fund-raisers to report income for the month of April, the Florida Times-Union reports.


    Florida MERS case confirmed

    Florida health officials have confirmed a second U.S. case of a mysterious virus that has sickened hundreds in the Middle East, The Florida Current reports.


    Common Core vanishes from state law

    With a stroke of a pen, Governor Rick Scott removed more than 30 references to Common Core State Standards from Florida law, The Florida Current reports.


    Groups protest race-based test standards

    The civil rights group Dream Defenders delivered 5,800 signatures Monday demanding that the state stop discriminating against black and Hispanic students by setting lower academic goals for students of color, The Florida Current’s Bill Cotterell reports.


    Doc Renuart Should Find 2014 Easier than 2012

    Doc Renuart can expect to face an old foe in November:  Rebecca Sue Sharp is angling for a rematch with the First Coast legislator.’s Jeff Henderson reports.


    The Florida Current’s Session Summary:  Growth Management and Real Estate

    Growth management remains a relatively quiet issue at the Capitol since the Legislature approved sweeping law changes in 2011.  The Florida Current’s Bruce Ritchie and Gray Rohrer summarize the 2014 Session developments.


    GAO Issues Dire Report on National Flood Insurance Program

    The National Flood Insurance Program  is a long, dark tunnel with no light in sight, a new Government Accountability Office report indicates, meaning that it is likely to be a political headache for the property casualty insurance industry for some time to come.  Arthur Postal reports for National Underwriter’s


    Republicans Fear U.S. “Surrender” to International Group on Systemic Risk Designations

    A group of Republican lawmakers demanded documents on Friday from U.S. regulators, voicing concerns that decisions about whether to designate large financial companies as systemically risky are unduly influenced by an international body, Reuters’ Sarah Lynch reports via Insurance Journal.


    Foreign Insurers’ Role in U.S. Tax Evasion Under Scrutiny

    A Swiss asset management firm, Swisspartners Group, agreed to pay $4.4 million to the United States to settle a probe into whether it helped U.S. taxpayers evade their federal income taxes, the U.S. Department of Justice announced on Friday.  Reuters’ Mark Hosenball and Julia Edwards report via Insurance Journal.


    NASA Says Melting Antarctic to Raise Sea Levels Sooner

    A rapidly melting glacial region of Antarctica has passed “the point of no return,” threatening to increase sea levels, according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.  Bloomberg’s Alex Morales and Justin Doom report via Insurance Journal.



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