Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Friday, January 8

Jan 8, 2010


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Florida Insurance Consumer Advocate, Florida Public Interest Research Group and Florida Consumer Action Network:  Don’t deregulate insurance–Consumers only ‘choice’ would be bad

Two legislators, Sen. Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton, and Rep. Bill Proctor, R-St. Augustine, have filed bills to deregulate residential property insurance rates in Florida. SB 876 and HB 447 would allow residential insurers to set premium rates without the approval of the Office of Insurance Regulation.


Florida CFO Sink’s consumer specialists recover $22 million for Floridians in 2009

Florida CFO Alex Sink today announced that her Department of Financial Services helped recover over $22 million for Florida’s insurance consumers in 2009.


Letter:  Insurers are legal pyramid schemes

A phrase in the Herald’s State Farm editorial (Dec. 29) caught my attention: “The state should not be in the business of strangling private enterprise …” Calling State Farm a private enterprise is laughable to me.


Jacksonville’s Fidelity National Financial refutes claims that it violated disclosure laws

Fidelity dealing with numerous lawsuits from a mortgage fraud scheme in San Diego.

Fidelity National Financial Inc. Thursday denied assertions in a New York Times story that the Jacksonville-based title insurance company violated disclosure regulations for public companies.


Getting Manatee County ready to recover from disasters

If a major hurricane were to smack Manatee, the county might take months, possibly years, for its infrastructure, economy and tax base to fully recover.


Fla. recoups $287M for Medicaid

A task force of Florida agencies said Thursday that it recovered $287 million in Medicaid overpayments and prevented more than $18.9 million in improper payments in the fiscal year that ended in June.


Miami-Dade pill mill ringleader convicted

The former ringleader of a bogus Internet operation that distributed more than $10 million worth of painkillers has been convicted, the Florida Attorney General’s Office announced Thursday.


Blog:  Crist’s Cover Florida plan in trouble?

One year after Gov. Charlie Crist’s Cover Florida took effect, there are signs that the voluntary approach to providing affordable health insurance is in trouble.


South Florida sees longest cold snap since ’89

The past six days of frigid weather mark South Florida’s longest cold streak in more than 20 years. Low temperatures remained below 50 degrees and highs failed to exceed 65 between Jan. 2 and Jan. 7.


Florida oil drilling researchers face deadline

A group that stands to have considerable influence over the future of oil drilling off the Florida coast is unlikely to present its findings to the Legislature until the first week of March.


Blog:  Former Fla. House Speaker Sansom taking ‘The Fifth’, so House lawyer wants grand jury testimony

Ray Sansom will refuse to speak at his House disciplinary hearing later this month, so the special prosecutor is going to court this morning to seek his grand jury testimony. But Sansom’s lawyer said he will file a motion to block the release.


Tampa firm PBSJ Corp. investigates subsidiary on suspicion of bribery

A prominent Florida engineering firm and major government contractor, Tampa’s PBSJ Corp., is coming off a series of corporate stumbles from campaign contribution miscues and internal embezzlement only to run into new questions over the way it conducts business overseas.


Editorial:  Bill McCollum uses health care block to burnish his conservative credentials

As Congress negotiates the final version of health care reform legislation there is a move to derail the effort through legal action among Republican lawmakers and state attorneys general, including Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum.


Crist to GOP: Return to basics

Using football analogies, Gov. Charlie Crist called on the Florida Republican Party to regroup after a tumultuous week and craft a game plan for the November elections.


Florida GOP’s No. 2 leader steps down

A top Florida Republican leader and a key critic of outgoing party chairman Jim Greer announced his resignation Thursday.


THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA:  Six candidates vie for Scionti seat in Florida House 

Six candidates ranging from well known local activists to up-and-coming lawyers are vying to fill the seat of state Rep. Mike Scionti, who is vacating his west Tampa seat to work for the Obama administration.


Blog:  Rep. Chris Dorworth’s challenger calls him a tax lover

It will be the mantra of Democratic candidates for the Legislature all year.


New federal program could make Florida condo loans easier to get

Florida condominium loans could be easier to get under a program announced Thursday by government-run mortgage company Fannie Mae.


Meeting set to discuss Sunshine Law bill

A meeting next week will get the ball rolling on legislation that could determine how the Sunshine Law applies to certain economic development groups.


Governor stands fast on space

At a roundtable meeting of space industry leaders Thursday, Gov. Charlie Crist promised to support a $3.2 million request from the local legislative delegation to help Brevard Workforce retrain aerospace workers.


Dolphins unveil stadium roof concept to keep Super Bowls in Miami

The Miami Dolphins have unveiled a concept for a 621,000-square-foot roof to help woo future Super Bowls.


All California Insurance Companies Respond to Terror Financing Probe

All 1,327 insurance companies licensed in California have responded to California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner’s request to provide data on their investments with companies doing business with Iran’s nuclear, energy and defense sectors.


Mississippi Denies Allstate Bid For 65 Percent Rate Hike

Mississippi officials have rejected a request from AllState Property and Casualty Insurance Co. to more than double insurance rates for 51,000 homes statewide.


State Farm asks for 19.1 percent rate hike in Louisiana

The Louisiana Department of Insurance will consider the request, which could generate $67.6 million, or an average of about $229 per policyholder. The company has about 296,000 policyholders in the state.


California Court Upholds $500 Million Award Against U.S. Life Insurance Co.

The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld an arbitration award requiring U.S. Life Insurance Co. to pay reinsurance of more than $500 million to Superior National Insurance Companies, workers’ compensation insurer in liquidation, the California Department of Insurance reported.


N.Y. Insurance Exchange Supporters Optimistic 

New York Gov. David A. Paterson’s call for reviving the New York Insurance Exchange has met with generally positive reviews with some agent associations saying they would welcome participating in the process.


NAIC Seeks State Lawmaker Talks On National Commission Concept

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners said it wants to continue discussions with two state lawmaker groups that have criticized its national commission proposal.


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