TALLAHASSEE -- With no debate, the Florida House voted 111-6 for a less aggressive plan to slim down the state-run Citizens Property Insurance Corp. on Tuesday, setting up a showdown with the Senate in the final days of the lawmaking session.
The House plan, amended into SB 1770 on Monday, would take steps to reduce the 1.3 million policies within the company, including lowering the maximum value of policy coverage from $1 million to $700,000 by 2017, prohibiting coverage of properties seaward of the coastal high-hazard line, creating an inspector general, and a "clearinghouse" where less risky properties could be absorbed into the private market.
But unlike the Senate version, the House plan doesn't mandate that new Citizens customers pay "actuarially sound" rates, which could lead to substantially higher premiums in coastal areas. The Senate version also lowers the coverage limit to $500,000.
The Senate sonsor, David Simmons, R-Altamonte Springs, has called Citizens "welfare for the wealthy" and said he expects some form of the package to pass by the Friday adjournment.