Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Tuesday, March 16

Mar 16, 2010



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Regulators fine, warn Clearwater-based insurer

A Clearwater-based property insurance company is the latest Florida company to run afoul of Florida insurance regulators.

Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty ordered Homeowners Choice Property & Casualty Insurance Company to pay a $10,000 fine within 30 days for violating Florida’s insurance regulations and come into compliance with the state’s rules or face losing its license.


Blog:  FEMA passes on offering Chinese drywall relief

The Federal Emergency Management Agency doesn’t want to get involved in the Chinese drywall fiasco.


Press Release:  Senator Mike Bennett and Representative Scott Plakon File Bill to Hold Insurance and Finance Commissioners Accountable

State Senator Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton) and State Representative Scott Plakon (R-Longwood) have filed legislation that requires that the Financial Services Commission reconfirm the appointment of the Director of the Office of Insurance Regulation and the Director of the Office of Financial Regulation every 2 years. The Financial Services


Bill would mean no property taxes on hurricane, renewable energy upgrades

Following up on a 2008 Constitutional amendment aimed at promoting renewable energy upgrades and hurricane prevention, a House panel today approved a measure to prevent appraisers from including such upgrades in a home’s assessed value.


Gulf Breeze endorses use of red-light cameras

In a 4-to-1 vote, the city of Gulf Breeze passed a resolution on Monday to join cities across the state lobbying legislators to authorize traffic-light cameras.


Florida Senate, but not House, primed to roll back ’09 driver license fee hikes

While conceding no dollar amount has been set, Senate President Jeff Atwater said today the Senate is committed to rolling back at least some of the $500 million worth of motor vehicle fees approved just last spring.


Program letting Florida Medicaid cash go to Alzheimer’s care set to expire

Alzheimer’s patients getting community or home-based care through a Medicaid waiver program in four Florida counties, including Palm Beach County, are being reminded that the pilot program is set to expire and they need to figure out how they’ll get care when it does.


‘Medical home’ passes Florida House panel

With lawmakers eyeing an expanded Medicaid managed-care system, a House panel today approved a bill designed to be an alternative — creating a system of physician-driven “medical homes” across the state.


Florida Recovers $6.5 Million from Pharmaceutical Company in Medicaid Fraud Settlement

State General Revenue Fund to receive $3.3 million

Attorney General Bill McCollum today announced that Florida will receive $6.5 million from a settlement with Dey L.P. and Dey, Inc.


Florida-based Signature HealthCare move now official

Officials with the state of Kentucky and senior-living facility operator Signature HealthCare LLC confirmed Monday that the company will move its headquarters to Louisville from Palm Beach Gardens.


Governor Crist Appoints Keith Reeves to the Board of Employee Leasing Companies

Governor Charlie Crist today announced the appointment of  Keith Reeves, 53, of Lakewood Ranch, owner, Capital Crescent Advisors, to the Board of Employee Leasing Companies.


Blog:  Trial lawyer bill leads to chaos in House commitee

The debate about a top legislative priority for the Florida trial lawyers — a bill to increase the financial damages recoverable from governments — led a House committee Tuesday to dissolve into chaos.


Florida alters housing program, aims to spend grant funds

Florida’s Department of Community Affairs made sweeping changes as the state continues pushing to spend federal housing money.

The state Department of Community Affairs announced a series of sweeping changes Friday to a widely criticized housing program, including the dismissal of a senior staffer and a streamlined grant approval process.


In Tallahassee today, push to dismantle a state agency

As the 2010 legislative session enters its third week, the pace of lawmaking has begun to quicken and an array of issues is moving to the forefront including two bills that would dismantle a major state agency, the Department of Management Services, and divide its duties among other agencies – including the elected post of chief financial officer.


Florida House Speaker backs down on trying to make 911 tapes secret

House Speaker Larry Cretul has aborted his push for a bill to keep 911 call tapes secret, citing pressure from First Amendment advocates, broadcasters and crime victims.


Florida oil-drilling report’s conclusions disappoint both sides

With its chief proponent saying he is in no hurry, the push to open Florida waters to oil and gas drilling inched past another milestone Monday when a House panel was briefed on a report by a Florida think tank.


One Democratic challenger to Florida Rep. Brown-Waite drops out

Tom Doolan, a Democrat from Mascotte, has dropped out of the race for the congressional seat now held by Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite, R-Brooksville.


Florida House hopefuls fight for credibility with GOP

Brevard’s hardest-fought political race almost certainly will be the Republican primary for state House District 31, which includes the South Beaches and most of the Melbourne area east of Interstate 95.


Software will help draw Florida district lines

It will determine population, size and shape for legislative districts.

On the day about 9 million Floridian households received their U.S. census forms in the mail, reporters were shown a demonstration of software that will be used to determine the population, shape and size of congressional districts and state House and Senate districts.


Horizon Bank fights Feds and neighboring bank

Horizon Bank intends to appeal a prompt corrective action directive ordering the bank to raise more capital or sell itself.


Want public records in Florida? Get ready for a hassle

At first glance, this might seem to be a good time to hold a job in Florida as an advocate and protector of open government.


U.S. financial services reform plan includes insurers

U.S. insurers would be monitored by a new Office of National Insurance and risk managers could have easier access to surplus lines markets under legislation proposed Monday.


Senate Acts To Extend National Flood Insurance Plan; House Action May Be Delayed 

Insurance representatives said it is unclear how promptly and in what form the House will act on new Senate legislation to extend the National Flood Insurance Program to Dec. 31.


In second Louisiana Chinese drywall trial, defense shows up

The head-to-head legal battle over Chinese drywall remediation that was supposed to occur last month in federal court finally began Monday, as plaintiffs’ attorneys squared off against those representing a Chinese manufacturer whose product was used in a Louisiana home.


400-Plus Firms Asked About Insurance Ties to Louisiana Parish Ex-Admin

A Louisiana parish council is asking hundreds of companies that make money on community contracts whether they also buy insurance from an agency owned by a former parish administrator.


PCI Reacts to Sen. Dodd’s Regulatory Reform Bill

David A. Sampson, president and CEO of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, issued the following statement in response to the new draft financial services regulatory reform bill released today by Chairman Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) of the Senate Banking Committee.


David Sampson:  The Climate Rules Weren’t From Us

Kimberley Strassel’s “Carbon Caps Through the Backdoor” (Potomac Watch, March 5) on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ effort to impose climate-risk disclosure rules on insurance companies correctly highlights the concerns of the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies and the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, whose member companies account for more than 70% of the property/casualty insurance market in the U.S.


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