Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Thursday, September 17

Sep 17, 2009



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Insurers Join Call for Review of Florida’s Insurance Mitigation Discounts

The arbitrary assignment of premium discounts for certain mitigation features without regard to insurance companies’ base rates or premium calculations for existing business has proven to be the downfall of the movement to “harden homes” in Florida, according to insurers.


Potential Hurricane Insurance Losses Added to Florida’s Long-Range Deficit Projections

A House-Senate budget panel has added the state’s risk of incurring billions of dollars in possible hurricane insurance losses to Florida’s long-range financial outlook.


Florida Insurance Chief: Homeowners Rates Might Rise; State Farm Might Stay

Homeowners insurers doing business in Florida — established as well as new –are losing money and the state regulator says rates may need to go up


Florida’s hurricane strategy still depends heavily on – and is limited by – borrowed money

When it comes to hurricanes, Florida’s two best friends are El Niño and Gov. Charlie Crist.


Editorial: Insurance queasiness

Property owners in Florida need to hope it’s true, that all the new insurance companies that Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty has been touting as stabilizing the Florida market are solid and available to everyday homeowners.


Tampa institute builds cluster of hurricane-resistant buildings in South Carolina

The Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) wasn’t content with its ultra-hurricane-resistant headquarters in Tampa, an iconic, hurricane-symbol shaped building adjacent to the Museum of Science and Industry.


Outlook Improves for State Reinsurer 

Cat Fund Blowing in a New Direction? 

Florida’s beleaguered reinsurance program is showing signs of improvement, but the fortunes of the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund (Cat Fund) this year may still depend more on the weather than anything manmade.


Mitigation Discounts – Are They “On the Money”? 

“Let’s see… I was induced to pay for a home mitigation inspection, then to pay to replace my windows with impact glass windows with the promise of mitigation credits that would reduce my windstorm insurance premiums, and now you’re going to take those credits away?”


Recognizing – and Writing – Liability Risks 

Despite the headlines, the Florida insurance market is not just about property.


Possible End to Rate Regulation 

Jolted by the news that State Farm was pulling out of the Florida property insurance market, some state lawmakers are reversing themselves dramatically on how to fix the state’s fragile property insurance market. Instead of clamping down with more regulation, some Republican legislators have proposed giving ratepayers a choice: Pay now or pay later.


Pitts Named Florida Compensation Judge

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has appointed Neal P. Pitts of Orlando as judge of Compensation Claims, succeeding Ivy Cream Harris in the Jacksonville district.


Amendment effort seeks to void health care reform in Florida

A group of state legislators wants to amend Florida’s Constitution to blunt the impact of President Barack Obama’s proposed overhaul of the country’s health care system.


Pfizer’s millions fund Florida’s new Medicaid whistleblower plan

State investigators can’t hire people to peer over the shoulders of every doctor, pharmacist and home health care owner who may be stealing from the Medicaid program. But they can entice people to become informers.


Report finds fault with Florida pension overseers

Florida has fewer people overseeing its pension fund than other states and annual independent audits may be needed, a new report said.


Former Bush insider passes on Space Florida job

Former NASA deputy administrator Shana Dale unexpectedly declined an offer to lead Space Florida, one day before board members of the state’s aerospace development body were supposed to make her hiring official.


Dems seek to overturn GOP fee hikes

A group of 15 Democrats in the Florida House will try to roll back the flood of fee increases and higher license charges that angered drivers across the state last month. So will three Republicans.


Brutal Florida Senate race over, candidates look forward

Shortly after what some are calling the ugliest race in Northeast Florida in recent memory, some turned their focus to how the election could revive the regions influence in the Legislature as many key lawmakers reach the end of their terms.


Outcome of Florida Senate race seen as victory for business groups

As business groups rejoice in the return to power of John Thrasher as a state senator, their archenemies in the legal profession downplay the result as just one election.


PSC commissioner says she is unbiased, won’t skip FPL hearing

A Public Service commissioner who dined with a Florida Power & Light executive as the utility sought a rate increase said Wednesday that she won’t step down from hearing the case because she remains impartial.


Regulators crack down on Tampa’s Century Bank of Florida

The board of directors of Century Bank of Florida has until late October to develop a plan to improve the bank’s financial condition, under a written agreement with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and the Florida Office of Financial Regulation.


SEC and UK FSA Discuss Approaches to Global Regulatory Requirements

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro and Hector Sants, Chief Executive of the UK Financial Services Authority (FSA), today announced plans to explore common approaches to reporting and other regulatory requirements for key market participants such as hedge funds and their advisers.


Regulators of Big Bond Buyers Challenge the Raters

State insurance regulators and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) continue to examine the role of ratings firms, like Moody’s Investors Service, in the rating of bonds.


Spike in Legislative and Regulatory Activity Puts Increased Demands on Insurance Organizations

A research report released by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services’ Insurance Compliance Solutions group shows 2009 legislative and regulatory activity for the insurance industry has increased considerably when compared to the previous two years.


IBHS Building $44 Million Lab To Simulate Disaster Effects  

Ground was broken today in Chester, S.C., for a $44 million disaster laboratory that can test structures for resistance to hurricane winds, wildfires and hail.


Gulf Coast Construction ‘Woefully Inadequate’ to Survive Storm Flooding

Government minimum flood elevation requirements for properties vulnerable to storm surge throughout the Gulf Coast region are “woefully inadequate,” according to a new study of property damage caused by Hurricane Ike, which struck the Bolivar Peninsula near Galveston, Texas one year ago yesterday, Sept. 13, 2008.


SEC Failure To Expose Madoff Fraud Seen Snagging D&O Claims 

Pursuing directors and officers claims against investment advisors in connection with the Madoff pyramid scheme could be difficult as multiple Securities and Exchange Commission investigations failed to uncover his fraud, an attorney advised today.


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