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Gallagher: Insurance Rate Relief Is on the Way for Homeowners

5/6/2006

CONTACTO: Tami Torres o Bob Lotane
(850) 413-2842 
 
TALLAHASSEE – Tom Gallagher, Florida's chief financial officer, tonight applauded state lawmakers for approving $715 million in insurance rate relief for property owners in Florida.  Since 2004, Gallagher has urged the Legislature to earmark surplus revenue collected during hurricane recovery to help homeowners deal with insurance assessments, hurricane repairs or hurricane preparation.
 
State lawmakers passed Senate Bill 1980 which directs $715 million be used to offset insurance assessments levied by Citizens Property Insurance Corporation for a deficit caused by losses during the 2005 hurricane season.  De acuerdo con la ley de la Florida, el déficit de la compañía debe ser pagado a través de gravámenes de todas las pólizas de seguro de los propietarios de viviendas de la Florida.
 
Gallagher said the legislature also set aside $250 million to help Floridians strengthen their homes to withstand hurricane winds, bringing the total relief for insurance costs to nearly $1 billion.  The $250 million allocation would be used to do free home inspections for homeowners and provide matching grants up to $10,000 for home improvements.
 
Después de la sesión de este año de la Legislatura, Gallagher ofreció la siguiente declaración:
 
 "Setting aside nearly $1 billion to help ease the burden of rising insurance costs is a huge victory for Florida's property owners.   
 
"We have collected millions in sales taxes during hurricane recovery and the fair thing to do was to give it back to Florida's families to deal with insurance costs.   This is not a bailout of Citizens; this is unprecedented rate relief for Floridians.
 
"In addition to insurance rate relief, we need long-term property insurance reforms that will help strengthen our market and improve availability.  Federal solutions and participation are necessary to ensuring a long-term victory for homeowners."
 
Gallagher ha propuesto varias soluciones federales, que incluyen la creación de un Fondo Nacional para Catástrofes, que permite a las compañías de seguros tengan un fondo de reserva con mora tributaria, y creen Cuentas de Ahorros para Catástrofes libres de impuestos federales.