Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Thursday, February 26

Feb 26, 2009


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Zurich Integrated Products Now Accepting New Business in Florida, Southeast, South Central U.S.

Zurich North America Commercial announced today that it will begin accepting new business in 11 South Central and Southeastern states through its new Zurich Integrated Products unit, which services commercial customers in between the small-to-middle market segments.


‘Shield Our State Coalition’ Forms to Pursue Bold Solutions for Florida Residential Insurance Market

Group Calls for New Public-Private Partnership to Manage Hurricane Insurance and Protect Florida’s Future

A group of concerned Floridians announced today the formation of a new coalition to address Florida’s hurricane-plagued residential insurance market.


Crist wants to merge health agencies

Governor Charlie Crist is reportedly preparing to recommend a merger of the two largest state health agencies into one, a proposal that would affect thousands of state employees.


THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA:  Fugate Joins House Panel Examination Of FEMA

The House Appropriations Committee’s Homeland Security Subcommittee held a hearing Thursday on “Disaster Response: Is FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) up to the Challenge?” Among the witnesses was Craig Fugate, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management.


State Representative Dennis Ross Gets Jeb Bush’s Support for Congressional Seat

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is endorsing Lakeland lawyer and state Rep. Dennis Ross’ run for the 12th Congressional District seat being vacated by Adam Putnam, according to local Republican Party sources.


Lawmakers Continue to Scramble on Wind Insurance

Gov. Charlie Crist’s political mantra has been to hold down property insurance rates, taxes and almost anything else costly for people he wants voting for him next year.


Couple Dispute Lennar’s Drywall Waiver

Victims of Chinese drywall are balking at a waiver agreement that is being required by Lennar Corp. in order for repairs to be made at their homes.


Study:  Miami No. 1 In Nation For Healthcare Costs

A study released Wednesday reports that Miami is the most expensive place for healthcare in the country, with its costs rising much faster than the national average over a 15-year period.


Health Care for America Now Florida Chapter:  Floridians Must Press Congress on Health Reform

President Barack Obama told the nation Tuesday night that the nation must get control of health spending immediately.


Requirements Stiffer To Get Driver License, Official ID

People seeking a new or renewed Florida driver license or identification card must now provide two forms of identification and proof of their Social Security number and residential address.


U.S. House Approves $183 Million for Everglades Projects

After years of tepid support, the House on Wednesday approved a giant budget bill with $183 million for Everglades projects, including $60 million for bridging the Tamiami Trail.


Governor Crist Announces Statewide Census Committee

Calls on Floridians to help ensure accurate 2010 Florida Census

As part of his ongoing effort to ensure Florida receives its fair share of federal funding, Governor Charlie Crist today signed Executive Order 09-41, creating the statewide 2010 Sunshine Census Complete Count Committee, and appointed 45 Floridians to serve on the committee. 


Creator Of Florida Prepaid Plan Declares $500,000 War On Tuition Increase

The 80-year-old mastermind of the successful Florida Prepaid College Program says he is willing to spend a half-million dollars to fight proposed legislation that would allow universities to increase their own tuition, fearing it will kill the prepaid program by making it too expensive for parents.


Florida Lawmakers Will Reconsider Renewable Energy

After flirting with tax breaks and minor subsidies for years, Florida lawmakers got serious about renewable energy in 2008. Big time energy reforms were discussed, but the ideas were new in Florida and lawmakers mostly delayed action.


High-Tech Fundraising Hits Florida Politics

Lobbyists reaching for their BlackBerry devices were taken aback by the text message: “Having a FR on 3-2. … Hoping u can help. Call with Questions. Peter.”


House Republican Leader Hasner Opposes Muslim Lobbying Effort

The leader of state House Republicans is sounding the alarm about a group of activists who want to host Florida Muslim Capitol Day.


EDITORIAL:  Legislature Should Retain E-mail

In a few days, when the calendar rolls from Feb. 28 to March 1, yet another batch of public e-mails will disappear forever from Florida state lawmakers’ files. With both time and integrity on the line, perhaps the Legislature could take a lesson from the city of Venice.


Study Reveals High Costs For Rerouting CSX Freight Trains

Rerouting freight trains around Lakeland would cost between $638 million and $1.3 billion, a Florida Department of Transportation consultant said Wednesday.


FBI Raids University Of Florida Nuclear Power Institute

Federal investigators are alleging that a University of Florida professor and three other members of his family fraudulently received millions of dollars from NASA and then allegedly funneled money to their personal bank accounts, court documents show.


Florida Trend:  Are Too-Generous Florida Pension Plans a ‘Prescription for Disaster?’

Police officers and firefighters in Jacksonville can retire after 30 years on the job and receive a pension amounting to 80% of their salaries.


U.S. Senate panel sets March 5 hearing on AIG

The U.S. Senate Banking Committee has scheduled a hearing on March 5 to examine government aid to insurer American International Group Inc.


States Continue To Review Capital And Surplus Relief For Insurers

With the March 1 statutory financial statement deadline days away for insurers, states continue to weigh in on how variations from prescribed capital and surplus requirements will be treated.


NAIC Announces 2009 Consumer Reps

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners named its 2009 funded and unfunded consumer liaison representatives Thursday, February 26, 2009.


PCI:  Fix Systemic Regulation Before Insurance

Congress should concentrate on drafting legislation to reduce systemic risk to the financial system before tackling solvency and consumer protection in the insurance sector, the chief executive of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America said.


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