Capitol to Courthouse Headliners: Wednesday, July 15

Jul 15, 2009

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Today Is Hearing Deadline for State Farm Florida Exit Plan

Today is an important deadline in the process of settling the terms of State Farm’s withdrawal from the Florida insurance market.


Editorial: Trying to rescue Citizens Property

Citizens Property Insurance Corp. governors took an initial step last week to secure the company’s financial stability – and boost Florida’s financial health – when they voted to increase most policyholders’ premiums by up to 10 percent next year.


Most homes still underinsured for hurricanes

MSB, the leading provider of building cost data to the property insurance industry, recently released its findings for current estimates of homeowner insurance coverage across the United States, and reveals an estimated 64 percent of U.S. homes are undervalued for the purpose of insurance by an average of 19 percent-many observers fear the numbers could be even higher for South Florida.


Collier floodplain maps a work in progress

By late 2010, Collier County will no longer have any D zones on its floodplain maps (D stands for a previously undetermined flood risk).


Palm Beach partners with county to study $6 million project to strengthen eroded shoreline

The town has decided to partner with Palm Beach County to strengthen shore protection along the eroded Reach 8 shoreline.


Tampa at impasse in pay raise dispute with three unions

Mayor Pam Iorio is standing firm on her pledge to include no raises in union contracts.


Moody’s pulls state from watch list, reaffirms bond rating

Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday removed Florida from its watch list possibly for downgrade and reaffirmed a Aa1 rating on the state.


CFO Sink’s consumer service specialists recover $11.5 million in six months

Single case results in $1.2 million payment for unpaid hospital claims

Florida CFO Alex Sink announced today that her Division of Consumer Services has helped Floridians recover more than $11.5 million in the first six months of this year in claim payments and premium refunds, including one case that resulted in a $1.2 million payment on a consumer’s unpaid hospital claims. 


Florida wants to start hunting pythons

The python posse is coming to the Everglades. Florida wildlife managers are poised to unleash a team of trained hunters to track and kill the giant snakes on state lands.


Everglades land may be offered as collateral in U.S. Sugar deal

South Florida water managers may offer Wall Street more than a quarter-million acres of state-owned lands, including thousands of acres of Everglades restoration tracts, as collateral to finance Gov. Charlie Crist’s land deal with U.S. Sugar Corp. and future environmental projects, records show.


Scott Arceneaux Named Florida Democratic Party Executive Director

Florida Democratic Party Chair Karen Thurman today announced the appointment of former Louisiana Democratic Party Executive Director Scott Arceneaux as Executive Director for the 2010 election cycle. Additionally, Arceneaux will handle the duties of the Party’s Political Director.


Crist Picks New Hillsborough Elections Chief

Gov. Charlie Crist has appointed former school superintendent Earl Lennard as the supervisor of elections in Hillsborough County.


Another candidate jumps into race for House District 84 seat

The race for the seat of former State Rep. Priscilla Taylor is taking shape with three candidates vying for Taylor’s unexpired term in House District 84.


Fort Myers resident seeks seat in Florida Senate

A Democratic hopeful has entered his name in the race for the state Senate seat held by Sen. Dave Aronberg, D-Greenacres, who is running for state attorney general: Fort Myers resident Pete Burkert announced Tuesday he is running for the District 27 seat.


Man behind Florida Billionaires Political Committee running in 3 races, formed 160 PACs

Josue Larose has started so many political action committees that he now leads about 27 percent of the state’s 362 PACs, according to the Florida Division of Elections.

A Deerfield Beach man has mystified state and federal officials by forming 160 political action committees in the past year — groups with names like the Florida Billionaires Political Committee and United States Former Vice Presidents Federal PAC.


Greg Steube widens fund raising lead in House race

The Republican primary is still more than a year away, but Greg Steube has widened his fund-raising lead over three other candidates running for the District 67 seat in the Florida House.


Banking rules, poor schools blamed for deterring offshore investment

Florida’s access to Latin markets and a multilingual workforce help it draw international investors, but local business leaders said regulation hurts the state’s prospects.

Florida’s economy needs less onerous regulation of international banking and more investment in education, local business leaders told the state economic development agency Tuesday.


South Florida fraud case latest in a string of actions

The Security and Exchange Commission’s case against Sean Nathan Healy of Weston is just the latest in a string of South Florida related enforcement actions announced by the SEC.


Report: Florida ‘a state in trouble’

On Monday, we learned that the number of millionaires in Florida had fallen dramatically. Now, a report finds that the economic future of the Sunshine State’s residents is not very bright.


Florida files suit against Arbitron, alleges bias

Florida has become the latest state to file a lawsuit against Arbitron, the largest media ratings company in the U.S., in an effort to stop the release of what the state attorney general calls “flawed radio station ratings.”


Dallas levees fail Army Corps inspection

The Trinity River levees in downtown Dallas have flunked an important review by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, casting more doubt on plans to build the Trinity Parkway toll road.


Alberici joint venture wins $300M New Orleans levee contract

A joint venture of Alberici Constructors Inc. and Archer Western Contractors Ltd. won a contract that could be worth nearly $300 million to work on reinforcing the New Orleans levee system damaged by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the companies said Tuesday.


Bill Gates of Microsoft envisions fighting hurricanes by manipulating the sea

If you thought domination of the world’s software market was cool, get a load of Bill Gates’ next technological vision: giant ocean-going tubs that fight hurricanes by draining warm water from the surface to the depths, through a long tube.


Insurers Offer Benefits Bundles

Insurers are offering small businesses a new way to cap the cost of insurance coverage for workers and their families through contracts for bundles of group disability, life and other insurance benefits.


NCOIL Agrees To Review Employee Misclassification Model

The National Conference of Insurance Legislators has agreed to delay a review of model legislation dealing with employers who misclassify employees to dodge workers’ compensation insurance.


Most Bond Insurers Still Plagued by Troubled Assets

Most bond insurers are headed for liquidation or run-off as losses from troubled assets linger, an analyst at independent research firm CreditSights said Tuesday.


Life insurer MetLife combining some U.S. businesses

MetLife Inc., the largest American life insurer, said on Tuesday that it plans to combine some U.S. businesses as part of a revamp it undertook to increase growth opportunities.


Michael Jackson’s $21.7M insurance policy in jeopardy

Michael Jackson’s $21.7 million life insurance policy is hanging in mid-air as officials are reportedly investigating whether his death was “self-inflicted.”


Study: Fall Most Deadly Driving, Winter Safest

Icy winter roads and vacation-clogged summer highways might seem the most dangerous for motorists, but new research says fall is when driving is at its deadliest.


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