By June 2, 2015

Governor Rick Scott Vetoes HB 1087 ……

An act relating to Operations of the Citizens Property Insurance Corporation…

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott vetoed HB 1087.

June 2, 2015

Secretary Kenneth W. Detzner

Secretary of State

Florida Department of State

R.A. Gray Building

500 South Bronough Street

Tallahassee, Florida 32399

Dear Secretary Detzner:

By the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Florida, under the provisions of Article III, Section 8, of the Constitution of Florida, I do hereby veto and transmit my objections to Committee Substitute for Committee Substitute for House Bill 1087, enacted during the 117th Session of the Legislature of Florida, during the Regular Session of 2015 and entitled:

An act relating to Operations of the Citizens Property Insurance Corporation…

The bill makes several modifications regarding Citizens Property Insurance Corporation’s (“Citizens”) current efforts to return viable Citizens policyholders to the private market thus reducing the risk of additional assessments for all Floridians. This effort has gone a long way in reducing reliance on Citizens and the potential of assessments after a catastrophic event when Floridians are at their most vulnerable.

The mission of Citizens is to provide property insurance to, “those who are, in good faith, entitled to obtain coverage through the private market but are unable to do so…” This bill undermines progress in growing the number of property insurance options and reducing assessment risks for Florida families. My primary concern is the provision that prevents a policyholder from receiving more than one take-out offer every six months from a private insurer. This provision is inherently unfair to Citizens policyholders in that it limits policyholders’ private market options, which means they may miss an opportunity to move to a better property insurance alternative. 

The second issue with this legislation is in regards to the provision that creates a process where a policyholder returns to Citizens even though they are currently insured by a private market insurer. This perpetuates reliance on Citizens, which increases the potential for burdensome assessments on Florida families.

 

As alternatives to Citizens continue to grow, state policy must continue to reduce dependency on Citizens, as it is designed to be an insurer of last resort and not the insurer of first resort. With the specter of assessments after a catastrophic event, we should encourage more competition that benefits every family. While I respect the hard work and dedication of the bill sponsors, provisions of this bill go against the mission and purpose of Citizens. For the reasons stated above, I withhold my approval of Committee Substitute for Committee Substitute for House Bill 1087, and do hereby veto the same.

Sincerely,

Rick Scott

Governor

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