Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Friday, October 16

Oct 16, 2009



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CFO Sink announces third arrest of public adjuster for preying on seniors 

Public Adjuster Pockets over $100,000, All Victims are Over the Age of 72 

Florida CFO Alex Sink today announced the third arrest this year of a South Florida public adjuster accused of bilking three senior citizens out of more than $100,000 in insurance compensation that was supposed to be spent to repair the victims’ homes. 


Griffin concedes ties to failed Florida insurance firm

INSURANCE: Barred for life from industry, he says he avoided playing direct role

Former Riscorp founder and convicted felon Bill Griffin was closer to American Keystone Insurance than state regulators ever knew.


Senator J.D. Alexander:  Florida faces financial storm

Floridians want straight talk from public officials. They want to be able to form opinions on the direction our state is headed with all the facts on the table.


Fla. Insurers on shaky ground

Insolvencies and losses undermine confidence in state’s property insurance system

Barring the surprise of a late-season storm, Florida will be spared from hurricane damage this year. Yet the state’s property-insurance system has taken direct hits — including one that strikes close to home.


Fla. Senator Nelson blasts firms axing home policies

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., lashed out at some of Florida’s top insurance companies Thursday in response to several of them starting to drop coverage for homeowners who have tainted Chinese drywall.


Lloyds offers Force Placed Coverage Alternate in Florida

A new Lloyds product designed to eliminate force-placed insurance is available in Florida and includes a property and flood policy.


Obama touts Florida’s Fugate

In New Orleans to check out Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts, President Obama touted his choice of FEMA chief, Craig Fugate — drawing a clear contrast between the veteran emergency services director and Katrina-era director, Michael Brown.


SEC Charges Three South Florida Residents With Operating A Multi-Million Dollar Ponzi Scheme And Affinity Fraud Targeting Haitian-Americans

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a civil injunctive action on October 16, 2009 against HomePals Investment Club, LLC and HomePals, LLC and their principals, Ronnie Eugene Bass, Jr., Abner Alabre and Brian J. Taglieri, alleging that they ran a Ponzi scheme and affinity fraud that targeted Haitian-American investors residing primarily in South Florida.


Crist invites small business leaders to take part in summit

Four Tampa Bay area business leaders have been invited by Gov. Charlie Crist to take part in a statewide small business summit next month in Tallahassee he hopes will help establish ideas that can foster and promote free competitive enterprise for the states small business owners.


Bankruptcy filings soar in Florida

While Wall Street has been obsessing over the market’s return to 10,000, Main Street has been focused on a darker threshold: 1 million.


Fla. State Sen. Ted Deutch to seek Congressman Robert Wexler’s seat

Democratic state Sen. Ted Deutch announced Thursday that he will run for Robert Wexler’s seat in Congress.


Potential Fla. GOP Grayson Foe Nabs More Endorsements

Armando Gutierrez Jr., a recent South Florida transplant to Orlando who wants to take on U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, grabbed another endorsement, this time from state House Majority Whip Carlos Lopez-Cantera, R-Miami.


Fla. Rep. Brown won’t run for Senate

Rep. Corrine Brown is ending a Senate exploratory committee and choosing instead to run for re-election.


Meek poll says he’s trailing in Florida Senate race

A poll commissioned by the Kendrick Meek campaign found that he trails Republican Charlie Crist by 47 percent to 31 percent in the . Meek?s pollster said, however, that when likely voters get an earful about Congressman Meek and his background he suddenly leaps into a lead over Crist by 43 percent to 38 percent.


Fla. Candidates’ accounts show early strengths

Third-quarter campaign finance reports are in, providing a nice snapshot of the legislative races next year. There’s still plenty of time for new entrants and fortunes to change, but real money now piles up and the divide between the monied and the striving grows.


Fla. PSC approves nuclear plant rate hikes

The Public Service Commission has approved rate increases to pay for building nuclear power plants that critics say aren’t needed.


Supporters of oil drilling off Florida building war chest in upcoming debate

From an office near the state Capitol, David Rancourt oversees a growth industry: the lobbying and public relations operation seeking to lift the long-standing ban on offshore oil and gas exploration in Florida.


In Error, Louisiana Paid Incentives to Insurers Too Soon

Louisiana’s Department of Insurance improperly made $29 million in incentive payments to five insurance companies before having all the agreements finalized, according to an audit from Legislative Auditor Steve Theriot.


Mississippi Rep. Taylor Urges Obama to Reform Flood Insurance Program

Using President Obama’s visit to New Orleans this week as his backdrop, Rep. Gene Taylor, D-Miss., again urged the Administration to reform the National Flood Insurance Program, including adding wind coverage to the national program.


Reviving N.Y. insurance exchange a priority

Exploring the possible revival of the New York Insurance Exchange is one of the priorities of the new superintendent of the New York State Insurance Department, a department official said.


43 New York insurance agents, brokers fined after accepting kickbacks

Agents and brokers at more than two dozen insurance agencies in Western and Central New York were fined as much as $5,000 each after accepting gift cards in return for recommending two specific glass shops to their customers. Another agent had his insurance license revoked.


NAIC Moves To Reevaluate Some Rating Firm Work 

State regulators, possibly within days, will approve the hiring of a firm to reassess the evaluations of 17,600 residential mortgage-backed securities downgraded by the major credit rating firms, an official said.


Runoff association seeks to speed claims resolution

A new dispute resolution procedure developed by the Assn. of Insurance & Reinsurance Run-Off Cos. is expected to help streamline resolution of disputed claims, according to the association.


FASB Plan Riles Group Of N.A. Insurance Enterprises 

A U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board proposal, intended to improve existing financial statements’ fair value accounting measurements, will actually make them difficult to compare and interpret, an insurance industry group said.


NAPSLO Selects Marshall Kath As New President 

Marshall Kath of Dallas has been elected president of the National Association of Professional Surplus Lines Offices, Ltd.


New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin goes to Cuba for hurricane research

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reports that New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin travels to Cuba on Friday, Oct. 16th to talk with officials there about hurricane preparation.


Supreme Court Notebook: Judges as Umpires of Lawyers’ Compensation

Chief Justice John Roberts once famously and controversially described a judge’s role as akin to an umpire who merely calls balls and strikes.


Owner of stolen Andy Warhol paintings waives insurance policy

The owner of a multimillion-dollar collection of artwork stolen last month has unexpectedly waived the insurance policy he owns to protect the paintings, Los Angeles police detectives confirmed Thursday.


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