Capitol to Courthouse Florida Insurance Report: Wednesday, February 29

Feb 29, 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


Florida’s 2012 Regular Legislative Session

  • Click here for today’s Senate block calendar
  • Click here for today’s House of Representatives block calendar


10:00 a.m.–House Session

  • CS/CS/CS/HB 725 relating to Insurance Agents and Adjusters by House Economic Affairs Committee; House Government Operations Appropriations Subcommittee; House Insurance and Banking Subcommittee; State Representative Bill Hager
  • CS/CS/HB 1101 relating to Insurance by House Economic Affairs Committee; House Insurance and Banking Subcommittee; State Representative Mike Horner

10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.–Senate Session

  • SB 1232 relating to Open Government Sunset Review/Personal Injury Protection and Property Damage Liability Policies. Senate Committee on Banking and Insurance
  • CS/SB 578 relating to Depopulation Programs of Citizens Property Insurance Corporation; Senator Garrett Richter
  • SB 1152 relating to the Repeal of a Workers’ Compensation Independent Actuarial Peer Review Requirement; Senator Garrett Richter

2:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.–Senate Committee on Budget

  • SB 378 relating to Expert Testimony by Senator Richter
  • CS/SB 1860 relating to Motor Vehicle Personal Injury Protection Insurance by Senate Committee on Banking and Insurance; Senator Joe Negron
  • CS/CS/SB 1404 Relating to Title Insurance by Senate Committee on Judiciary; Senate Committee on Banking and Insurance; Senator Thad Altman



Daily Insurance-Related News


Property insurance bills suffer setbacks in Senate

A bill to let surplus lines carriers take over policies of state-backed Citizens Property Insurance Corp. was postponed on the Senate floor Tuesday. And a separate bill to shrink the size of the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund, or Cat Fund, also was postponed.


Lawmakers seek compromise on Personal Injury Protection 

Heavy lobbying by massage therapists temporarily derailed one of the major issues of the legislative session:  Extensive fraud in Florida’s no-fault car insurance program.


Health care legislation divides House

House Speaker Dean Cannon and Republican leaders in the House suffer a rare defeat as two GOP medical doctors push changes to a health care train.


Blog:  Without some help, proposal to overhaul assisted living facilities could die

Efforts to reform how the state regulates assisted living facilities could be dead for this session if Senate leaders don’t do something about it.


Blog:  Senate panel kills effort to hike lawmakers’ health insurance costs

Senator Joe Negron wants Florida legislators to pay as much for their health insurance as their employees do.


Senator Don Gaetz helps keep drug repackaging measure alive in the Senate

Senator Don Gaetz helped pull a contentious workers’ compensation overhaul back from the brink of defeat on Tuesday, but another senator promised “nuclear war” if a controversial amendment was removed.


Florida House, Senate leaders getting closer to a deal on budget allocations

House and Senate leaders said they worked through the weekend to reach an agreement on budget allocations that would allow a formal conference to begin.


Florida High Court to Hear Redistricting Case Wednesday

The Florida Supreme Court hears oral arguments Wednesday morning in what could be a landmark redistricting case, after a series of shifting coalitions triggered a week and half of topsy-turvy decisions.


Although court decision is pending, lawmakers push ahead with state worker drug tests

The Senate version of the drug-testing bill was amended Tuesday to conform with the House version before being passed out of the Senate Budget Subcommittee on General Government Appropriations on its way to the floor.


Growth bills moving in Florida House, Senate as opposition fades

House and Senate leaders said they didn’t want to deal with controversial growth issues this year after the sweeping changes approved last year.


Homeowners jeer Florida Senate panel passage of foreclosure bill

A Senate panel has cleared a bill that aims to streamline and speed up the state’s mortgage foreclosure process but was immediately jeered by an angry crowd of homeowners.


Blog:  Debt-ridden prison system shuts re-entry centers

The deficit-plagued Department of Corrections, struggling to close an estimated $79 million budget hole, is closing two minimum-security re-entry centers in Pompano Beach and Bradenton.


Blog:  Ranks of moderate Republicans shrink with Senator Dennis Jones leaving after 32 years

Never known to bask in the limelight, Dennis Jones promised he wouldn’t make a big deal about his farewell speech to the Florida Senate on Tuesday.


Blog:  Jim Greer files more lawsuits against Republicans he says betrayed him

Ousted Florida Republican Chairman Jim Greer on Tuesday sued the law firm of former party attorney Jason Gonzalez, saying Gonzalez drafted a $123,000 severance package, gave Greer advice about it – and then betrayed him.


Blog:  After years of bashing, Governor Rick Scott sends President Obama “thank you” letter on taxes

Republican Rick Scott has spent much of the past few years ridiculing President Obama – leading the Conservatives for Patients Rights campaign against the federal health care overhaul and – as governor – refusing millions of dollars in federal grants linked to the effort.


Louisiana Reports 4-Year Decline Vehicle Thefts

According to data from the FBI Uniform Crime Report, the rate of motor vehicles thefts in Louisiana decreased by 15.6 percent from 2009 to 2010, marking the fourth consecutive such year.


North Carolina Farm Bureau to Raise Homeowners’ Rates, Drop Policies

North Carolina’s third largest homeowners insurer is looking to reduce its exposure in the state by increasing rates and rolling back its policyholder numbers, citing steep increases in reinsurance costs.


Coverage for Declining Property Value Now Available in Oklahoma

In September 2011, Home Value Insurance Company introduced a type of homeowners’ insurance intended to safeguard families against a decline in property value.


Missouri Audit Criticizes State-Created Insurance Firm

A state-created insurance company has built a competitive advantage by enjoying a best-of-both-worlds scenario – avoiding federal income taxes by claiming to be a public corporation yet generally operating as a private entity and shelling out big bucks for executive perks, according to a report Monday by the Missouri auditor.



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