Sen. David Simmons, R-Maitland, believes he has the votes to put his sweeping overhaul of Citizens Property Insurance Corp. up for a final vote in the Senate on Thursday.
Simmons was busy lobbying his colleagues over the proposal (SB 1770) during the floor session on Wednesday after the measure was postponed for the second time in nine days from being put up for a final Senate vote.
Sen. Anitere Flores, R-Miami, filed a bill in the Florida Senate Friday that would add a consumer advocate to Citizens Property Insurance Corp.'s board of directors. It would also require that two of the members hail from South Florida.
Getting a handle on property insurance rates is a top priority in the upcoming Florida Legislature 2013 regular session, but it's no easy task, according to popular consensus at Monday night's Town Hall session hosted by WLRN and the Miami Herald.
"The legislature is in a terrible box," said Mary Ellen Klas, the capital bureau chief for the Miami Herald and a panelist at Monday's event. "This is one of the tough issues they have to grapple with."
The price of property insurance in Florida keeps going up -- such that some homeowners are getting second mortgages or dropping coverage all together. The state created Citizens Property Insurance to be the insurer of last resort for Florida homeowners. But plans to shrink Citizens by loaning money to private insurance companies and allegations of corporate misconduct have sparked outcries by some state officials and the public alike.
Affordable Care Act issues are expected to dominate discussions of insurance in the Legislature in the weeks ahead but lawmakers will also take swipes at workers compensation, hurricane preparations and Citizens Property Insurance Corp when they return.
On The Florida Roundup: Hurricane season has officially ended. South Florida was saved from any severe hurricanes, but we see the effects of climate change as beaches erode, roads crumble and flooding inundates parts of region.
An internal investigation of Citizens Property Insurance in Florida, a government-run home insurer of last resort and the state's largest insurer, found that the company has a sordid history of sex scandals, cover-ups and big spending.
Recently, Citizens has gotten a lot of scrutiny because it has been consistently hiking up premiums or removing coverage from large numbers of people in the state.
However, a recent investigation found that the problems with the 10 year-old not-for-profit insurer starts with the people running the show over there in Tallahassee.