Florida Calls Special Session on Insurance Issues for Jan. 16

November 29, 2006

Florida state officials will begin efforts to reshape the state’s property and casualty insurance market with a special legislative session on Jan. 16, 2007.

Governor-elect Charlie Crist, Senate President Ken Pruitt (R- St. Lucie), and House Speaker Marco Rubio (R-Miami) announced that they will call the session to begin an effort to restructure the state’s property insurance market and provide relief to residents and businesses.

The Senate, House, and Governor-elect said they will work with Governor Jeb Bush and Chief Financial Officer-elect Alex Sink to develop a comprehensive reform plan with the goal of increasing competition, lowering rates, providing incentives for preparedness, and creating greater transparency for consumers.

Governor-elect Crist said he is “optimistic that we can find solutions that will address not only our immediate needs, but will also yield a better system to address future storms that are predicted to make landfall in Florida.”

“It is now time to roll up our sleeves and tackle the pressing problems that voters have sent us here to solve,” added Pruitt.

Speaker Rubio maintained that any solution “must include savings for all insurance consumers and an expansion of the current private insurance market. We will consider any and all ideas that will improve affordability, quality, and availability of insurance.”

“The lack of available and affordable property insurance is the biggest threat to our economy – we cannot wait until the 2007 legislative session to find the solutions that our families and businesses need,” Bush said.

Bush said the lawmakers should benefit from the research and recommendations made by the Property and Casualty Insurance Reform Committee, which was led by Lt. Governor Jennings.

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