Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Thursday, February 11

Feb 11, 2010



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Florida Court Restricts Litigation Notice Rule Under No-Fault

A 2001 amendment to Florida’s no-fault law that requires insureds to notify their insurer that they intend to sue cannot be applied retroactively to policies issued before the amendment was enacted.


Florida Trial lawyers hire Obama campaign boss

In an effort to regain credibility, the powerful trial lawyer lobby hired one of the state’s top Democratic campaign consultants to guide its political strategy.


South Florida’s floodgates vulnerable to rising sea levels

Rising sea levels already threaten South Florida’s coastal floodgates, likely prompting the need for costly retrofits to protect some of the state’s most populated areas, water managers warned Wednesday.


Congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart to retire

Republican Representative Lincoln Diaz-Balart, one of Congress’ staunchest supporters of the U.S. trade embargo against Cuba, said on Thursday he would not seek re-election to his Florida congressional district.


Heartland Institute:  Florida’s hurricane fund can be repaired

Florida has a golden opportunity to fix the state’s long-troubled Hurricane Catastrophe Fund.


Florida legislature may seek a chunk of red light fines

A bill introduced in the state Legislature would bring consistency to the mishmash of local red-light camera programs operating in Florida cities and counties. It would also bring millions of dollars to the state treasury.


Florida texting bill’s fate unclear

Florida lawmakers historically have been reluctant to embrace personal restrictions on drivers.


Blog:  Bill would expand “corporate scholarships,” add more financial, academic accountability

Rep. Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, filed a bill today that advocates say would make important changes to a scholarship program designed to help low-income children attend private school.


Florida counties among group challenging impact fees 

Lee, Collier, seven other counties and three government associations filed suit to overturn new restrictions on local impact fees Wednesday, saying the Legislature unconstitutionally forced them to prove their fees are accurate.


THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA:  Arduin Back as New Senate Budget Advisor

The state Senate’s newest office is going to be staffed by a familiar name from the recent past.


Three Southwest Florida lawmakers seek to rein in financial groups

Three Southwest Florida legislators are aiming to secure the economic climate by empowering a state agency with tighter control over debt settlement vendors and international banks and trusts.


Citigroup to let distressed Florida owners stay in homes

Citigroup Inc. plans to let homeowners on the verge of foreclosure stay in their homes for six months – if they turn over the deed to their property. Citi said Thursday it is launching the pilot program, dubbed “Foreclosure Alternatives,” this week in Texas, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey and Ohio.


Blog:  Pam Bondi plans Florida Attorney General campaign kick-off

Republican Pam Bondi will kick off her campaign for Florida attorney general Thursday, Feb. 18, at 5:30 p.m. at the Chester H. Ferguson Law Center.


Democrat trying again for Florida House seat

Voters in northwest Volusia County could see a rematch this fall in the race for a Florida House seat.


THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA:  Group Created By Florida State Legislature Never Meets, Does No Work

In 2008, the Legislature and governor created a body that was required to recommend changes in the state’s criminal justice system, including the sentencing guidelines. But the group has never met, essentially violating the law that created the body.


As Florida House issues subpoenas, settlement talks go on with former House Speaker

It has the potential of a bombshell: Some of the biggest names in Florida politics, including U.S. Senate candidate Marco Rubio, raising their hands and swearing to tell the truth about what they knew of state Rep. Ray Sansom’s dealings with a Panhandle college.


The ‘cool’ quotient: To succeed, Florida has to be cool again, leaders agree

As Florida economic boosters work to transform the state into a high-tech, high-wage powerhouse, they’re battling a perception problem that even silver-haired grandfather Larry Levine grasps.


Louisiana Rejects State Farm Home Insurance Rate Hike Request

Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon said he has denied a request by State Farm, the state’s largest home insurer, for an average 19.1 percent rate hike.


New York Agents Group Suing State over Pay-Disclosure Rules

A trade group for New York insurance agents says it will sue the state over newly issued rules that would force agents to reveal to clients how much they are paid.


New Hampshire Asks Court to Reconsider $110M Medical Malpractice Ruling

New Hampshire is asking the state Supreme Court to reconsider rejecting its claim to $110 million in surplus from a fund that underwrites medical malpractice insurance.


Column:  Don’t repeal McCarran-Ferguson Act

The recent nationwide battle over passing a national health care bill raises an important question. What will happen to the McCarran-Ferguson Act, the federal antitrust exemption for the business of insurance?


Washington Closer To Creating Emergency Insurance for Flooding

Washington is one step closer to allowing the creation of a flood insurance joint underwriting association (JUA), a publicly sponsored, temporary, not-for-profit insurer of last resort to provide insurance when certain types of coverage become unavailable on the open market.


Insurers Have Tools On Shelf For Carbon Storage Cover, Say Experts 

The insurance industry has the tools and experience to provide needed coverage when the storage of carbon emissions becomes the primary method to prevent build-up of gases in the atmosphere, according to a broker executive.


WellPoint Blames Big Premium Hike on Demographics

Health insurer WellPoint blames a shift in demographics and rising medical costs for its planned 39 percent rate hike for some California customers.


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