Tuesday, March 13, 2007


State House leaders fast-track bill to reduce property taxes. In early March the House Efficiency & Accountability Council passed a controversial bill to sharply roll back local taxes, saving homeowners statewide as much as $5.8 billion. This is step #1 in a 2-phase plan – the 2nd is a constitutional amendment to do away with all taxes on homesteaded property and replace this with a 2 ½% increase in the statewide sales tax.

The Florida legislature passed a bill that could lower premiums between 5% and 40% and provide other insurance relief to millions of property owners. Some of the new provisions might include that property owners may be able to exclude windstorm and contents coverage. The state may remove the new requirement that Citizens Property Insurance Corporation charge the highest premiums in the state. The Citizen’s Jan 1, 2007 rate increase might be frozen at the Dec. 31, 2006 level. They may eliminate the cap on deductibles so a homeowner can choose a deductible other than the standard 2%, 5% OR 10% in current law. All non-homestead properties would be eligible for Citizens coverage effective March 1, 2007. Insurance companies may be required to give at least 100 days written notice of non-renewal, cancellation or termination of a homeowners policy. Payment of claims might be expedited following a storm, e.g., within 90 days.

To read the entire bill go to http://snipurl.com/185co.

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