Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Friday, April 24

Apr 24, 2009

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Florida Nears Votes on Property Insurance Bills

Today could be the day both the Florida House and Senate take up legislation to improve the state’s property insurance market, including proposals allowing state-backed insurance writer Citizens Property Insurance to raise its rates.


Florida Citizens insurance rate freeze rejected

The House turned aside proposals Thursday to continue a freeze on premiums for customers of taxpayer-backed Citizens Property Insurance Corp., setting the stage for a vote on a sweeping property insurance bill today.


Hollywood-based insurer ordered to drop policies

About 5,000 homeowners in Palm Beach County must find a new insurer by May 31 after a judge in Tallahassee this week ordered Hollywood-based Coral Insurance to drop all of its 11,750 policies before hurricane season, which begins June 1.


Florida lawmakers hoping to protect credit rating

As lawmakers huddle behind closed doors on the budget, a national bond rating service is watching to see whether it should downgrade the state’s credit rating.


McCarty Responds To Articles About Florida’s Property Insurance Market

It is always interesting, and frequently amusing, to read various “research” pieces on the Florida property insurance market.


Editorial: Throwing in the insurance towel

The House of Representatives gave up on property insurance rate regulation Wednesday, voting 105-13 to let some companies charge whatever they like.


Efforts on Chinese drywall fix too slow, Sen. Bill Nelson says

A frustrated Sen. Bill Nelson said Thursday that federal investigators are moving too slowly on Chinese drywall, as the number of complaints continued rising in Florida and the state’s attorney general warned that the issue has attracted scam artists.


Starke rethinking red light cameras

Starke Police Chief Jeff Johnson and the city commission put the brakes on plans to put traffic light cameras at intersections in the city limits.


Ocala pharmacy could face millions in liability over polo horses’ deaths

Now that Franck’s Pharmacy has said it incorrectly mixed a compound suspected of killing 21 horses, the Ocala-based pharmaceutical company could be liable for millions of dollars in civil damages.


Senate passes bill to crack down on ‘pill mills’

After years of stalled efforts to stop prescription drug abuse and slow the state’s growing pain clinic industry, the Florida Senate on Friday passed legislation to create a statewide prescription drug monitoring system to track those “doctor shopping” for addictive legal drugs.


Tuition increase, property insurance top Florida Legislature agenda

With budget negotiations still stalled, lawmakers in the House and Senate Friday will busy themselves with final votes on some major legislation, including bills to raise state university tuition and to remedy Florida’s property insurance crisis.


Final week for budget: pleas, deals, secrecy

Secret budget talks continued unabated Thursday as Florida lawmakers floated ideas that have not been discussed publicly, including a tax on a Miami-based tobacco company and deeper cuts to higher education.


Lawmakers reject Crist’s Seminole gambling plan

Legislators in both houses continue negotiations; Senate offers new proposal

A day after Gov. Charlie Crist pitched a $1.1 billion loan from the Seminole tribe to get Florida through rocky financial times, leading lawmakers in both houses of the Legislature shunned that idea and moved ahead with their own late-hour gambling talks.


Watered-down version of elections law faces House

A weakened version of an elections law overhaul heads to the House after an earlier version triggered strong criticism.

Following harsh criticism from voting-rights groups and a threatened veto by Gov. Charlie Crist, House leaders have retreated from a sweeping overhaul of Florida’s election laws.


House OK’s plan to overhaul growth management laws

In the name of economic development, and over the heated objections of environmental groups, the House on Thursday gave preliminary approval to an overhaul of growth-management laws designed to help recession-weary developers.


CFO Sink opposes near-shore drilling bill

Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink today released the following statement opposing the near-shore drilling bill that is scheduled to be voted on by the Florida House of Representatives: “As Florida’s Chief Financial Officer it is my responsibility to protect the people of Florida and all state owned land, and I take these obligations very seriously.” 


Former Fla. Speaker Rubio to reveal Senate plans

Former House Speaker Marco Rubio is getting ready to announce whether he’s in or out of the U.S. Senate race and said today his decision won’t be based on Republican Gov. Charlie Crist’s political plans.


NAIC CEO:  Insurance and the Feds

Regulate Me, Please, by Tom Wilson, the chairman of Allstate (Op-Ed, April 16), missed the mark.


EU approves new oversight system for credit rating agencies blamed for financial crisis

The European Union on Thursday approved new rules creating European oversight for credit rating agencies that have taken some of the blame for the financial crisis by rating bad debt as good.


Allstate To NY’s Dinallo: We’re Legal, We Swear

In response to the New York insurance superintendent’s inquiry into its possible illegal participation in unregulated insurance markets, Allstate has provided an affidavit that it is operating legally.


Mississippi to Study Hurricane Mitigation Efforts’ Costs, Benefits

Mississippi has hired a wind engineering firm to assess the various steps that property owners might take to reduce damage from hurricanes.


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