Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Thursday, January 6

Jan 6, 2011

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The News Service of Florida:  Sinkhole Report to Become Legislative Fodder

A state-run insurance pool, stricter regulations on public insurance adjusters and shifting the burden of proof on claims are among the options posed by Senate committee for curbing sinkhole claims that have tripled since 2006.


Industry Group, Citing Florida Utility, Sees Dangers in Coating of Asphalt Roofing

The application of white, “cool-roof” coatings to asphalt-shingle roofs has gotten a Florida electric utility in hot water with some homeowners due to allegations that the coatings caused roof deterioration and leaking, as reported Tuesday in Durability + Design.


State Auto Florida Parent Closes Sale of Non-Standard Auto Subsidiary

State Auto Financial Corporation. completed the previously announced sale of its non-standard automobile insurance subsidiary, State Auto National Insurance Company, to Hallmark Insurance Company of Fort Worth, Texas, effective Dec. 31.


Hub Acquires Florida’s Farr Agency

Insurance broker Hub International Limited has acquired the assets of Farr Insurance Group, a Venice, Florida-based insurance brokerage firm. Terms of the acquisition were not .


Florida-based PuroClean to Open New Property Restoration Training Facility

Facility is only the 17th of its kind in the world

Florida-based PuroClean, which specializes in property emergency restoration services, announced plans to open a new Applied Structural Drying Demonstration Facility.


Lakeland Insurance Company One Life America Adding 100 Jobs

A local insurance company is expanding and needs to hire at least 100 new employees for its Lakeland call center sales force.


Suburban Lake Worth agent charged in insurance fraud case

When Ruth Tarantini’s boyfriend was in a crash that left a motorcyclist dead, she at least found some comfort in the fact that she had insurance.


Federal Researchers to take cold look at Florida citrus

Federal officials will conduct a special survey to determine how this season’s cold weather has affected Florida’s citrus crop.


Scott orders reviews of 53 rules – but doesn’t say how they’ll occur

Acting on his anti-regulatory priority, Governor Rick Scott’s first act in office was to sign a sweeping executive order putting a hold on all pending state government regulations.


    Governor Rick Scott selling state planes

    Website auction starts Feb. 9th

    State officials’ high-flying days could soon be over.


    Scott names development executive as top Florida planner

    Governor Rick Scott named a development company executive as Florida’s next planning chief Wednesday and brought Kurt Browning out of retirement to again serve as secretary of state.


    Scott taps St. Joe executive to head growth management agency

    Governor Rick Scott tapped an executive at one of Florida’s largest development companies to head the stage agency charged with managing growth. Billy Buzzett, a fifth-generation Floridian who previously worked for the St. Joe Company, will head the Department of Community Affairs.


    Wasserman Schultz to lead incumbent retention, redistricting efforts for House Democrats

    U.S. Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Weston, has been tapped to lead House Democrats effort to retain their incumbents in the 2012 elections and as the point person on redistricting.


    Whip It:  Reps. Rooney, Deutch named to party whip teams

    Though they are both relative newcomers to Capitol Hill, U.S. Representatives. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta, and Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, have been key positions in the 112th Congress that convened Wednesday.


    Senate President Haridopolos Says $300 Million Too Costly For High-Speed Rail

    Newly inaugurated Governor Rick Scott has not yet signaled whether he will get on board with a high-speed rail system connecting Tampa and Orlando, but the Senate president says he won’t go along for the ride.


    Florida Senate Sets the Stage for Debate on Immigration

    Lawmakers have discussed potential legislation patterned after an Arizona law.

    The first of three immigration meetings set for Monday will be the Senate’s first look at a debate over a comprehensive Arizona-style measure, a topic that Governor Rick Scott made one of the biggest social issues of his campaign for governor.


    Leadership battle heats up at Republican Party of Florida

    With Republicans gathering in Orlando next weekend to elect a new party chair, a previously uncontested race appears to have gathered a new candidate.


    As Jennifer Carroll takes office, Florida’s grim past recedes a little further

    Moments after Jennifer Carroll was sworn in Tuesday as Florida’s first black female lieutenant governor, Katina Glasco grinned broadly, raised her fists and mouthed an enthusiastic, “Yes!”


    State report on foreclosure crisis slams banks, mortgage industry, lawyers

    Sweeping evidence of the case the state attorney general’s office has built in its pursuit of foreclosure justice for Florida homeowners is outlined in a 98-page presentation complete with copies of allegedly forged signatures, false notarizations, bogus witnesses and improper mortgage assignments.


    Senator Nan Rich:  Florida Loses Out on Millions for Uninsured Kids

    Florida’s failure to qualify for new money to enroll more children in the state’s subsidized children’s health insurance program is due to legislative inaction, said Senate Democratic leader Nan Rich.


    State Revenues Down More Than $1 Trillion in 2009

    When Florida’s legislators gather in March for the 2011 legislative session, tackling the state’s $3.5 billion deficit will be one of their most difficult tasks. Many states face similar (or worse) situations, but that fact won’t make it any easier.


    Texas insurance commissioner to step down

    Mike Geeslin led agency for 5 years; governor has not appointed a replacement.

    The state insurance commissioner, who has held the job for 51/2 years, said Wednesday that he won’t seek to renew his term after it expires Feb. 1.


    Opinion:  Texas officials must stop unjust homeowners rate hikes now

    We’re not happy with the tsunami of rate increases for homeowners insurance in Texas, but we have to admit they’re justified.


    Federal Emergency Management Agency Told to Go After $643 million in Payments Made After Katrina, Rita 

    A report from the Office of Inspector General in the Department of Homeland Security urged the Federal Emergency Management Agency to collect $643 million in improper disaster assistance payments doled out after hurricanes Katrina and Rita.


    Study Says No-Fault Fraud A Major Problem in New York City

    Nearly one out of every five no-fault auto insurance claims closed in the New York City area in 2010 appears to have elements of fraud, according to a new study from the …


    New York Eyeing Plan to Combine Insurance, Banking Deptartments

    To deal with a record deficit, New York’s new governor is looking to make cuts in state government, and he.


    Marsh & McLennan Agency Acquires Minnesota-based RJF Agencies

    Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC , a subsidiary of insurance broker Marsh Inc., announced it has RJF Agencies Inc., one of the largest independent insurance agencies in the upper Midwest.


    Farmers Who Limit Losses to Get Insurance Refunds

    The federal government proposed Thursday to reward farmers who use crop insurance and demonstrate good management practices that limit their losses.


    Washington governor seeks workers comp changes

    Washington Governor Chris Gregoire says she will introduce workers compensation legislation to set up a network of credentialed health care providers for the state and self-insured employers.



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