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Florida Cabinet reinforces Rep. Janet Long’s legislation to reign in public adjusters

in Statewide by
After nearly five years, claims that continue to be filed against insurance companies as a result of Hurricane Wilma are being considered by the state’s top political leaders.

State Representative Janet Long (D-St. Petersburg) said “recognition of the problem by the Governor, Chief Financial Officer and Attorney General adds further importance and urgency” to a bill she filed this week that would limit the time that claims can be filed. Current law allows five years. Representative Long’s bill (HB 1181) reduces that limit to three years. The bill’s Senate companion is SB 2264 by Sen. Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton.

Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink today said she believes three years “is plenty of time to know if you had damage from a hurricane.” The CFO made the comment at today’s meeting of the Florida Cabinet and a subgroup, the State Board of Administration (SBA), which serves as trustees for the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund. Attorney General Bill McCollum agreed, saying cutting off hurricane claims after some reasonable period “just makes common sense.” Governor Charlie Crist has also expressed interest in the bill.

The issue surfaced as the SBA was being asked to authorize another bond issue to help fuel the CAT Fund to cover new or reopened claims stemming from Hurricane Wilma. For more information, please click here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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