Mitigation Bill Bolstered with $10 Million Appropriation for No-Interest Loans

Apr 25, 2008

House Bill 7103 was read a second time on Special Order and amended in the House this morning, April 25, 2008.

The late-filed amendment by Representative Ron Reagan provides for a $10 million appropriation for the My Safe Florida Home Program to implement a no-interest loan program by October 1, 2008 contingent upon the selection of a qualified vendor and execution of an acceptable contract.

HB 7103 Relating to Mitigation Enhancement revises eligibility criteria for qualifying as wind certification entity; requires the Florida Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) to implement quality assurance program; revises DFS authority to require improvements to be made as condition of reimbursing homeowner approved for grant; authorizes DFS to transfer specified funds to not-for-profit entity other than Volunteer Florida Foundation, Inc.; requires DFS to develop no-interest loan program; expands DFS authority to contract with additional third parties for specified purposes; requires insurers to account for county ordinances and local amendments to Florida Building Code in rate filings; requires insurers to accept as valid uniform mitigation verification forms certified by DFS or signed by specified professionals. Effective Date: July 1, 2008.

HB 7103 must be read a third time in the House before moving to the Senate for consideration. A similar bill, SB 644 Relating to the My Safe Florida Home Program/Wind Certification by Senator Charlie Justice currently is awaiting hearing by the Senate Governmental Operations Committee, its final committee of reference.

A copy of Representative Reagan’s amendment is attached for your review.

Please forward comments on HB 7103 and today’s Reagan amendment to kscott@cftlaw.com.