An amendment offered by Sen. Mike Fasano changed Senate Bill 408.
The major property insurance reform bill in the Florida Senate that aims to cut costs to insurers and attract new capital to the Florida market advanced through the Budget Committee March 22, but not before an unfriendly amendment passed.
Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, offered the amendment to Senate Bill 408, sponsored by Sen. Garrett Richter, R-Naples, that keeps in place current state law requiring insurers to pay replacement cost in advance of repairs being made instead of allowing insurers to hold back a portion of payment until a policyholder shows receipts for part of the work.
Richter, chairman of the banking and insurance committee, opposes the change because it doesn't ensure repairs are made, which ultimately adds to costs for policyholders and taxpayers. “Sen. Fasano is looking out for the constituents in his district; I'm looking out for people across the state,” Richter says.
The bill now goes to the Rules Committee before heading to the Senate floor where more amendments can be expected to address the controversial issues surrounding sinkhole coverage. The bill also allows insurers the option of providing sinkhole coverage. In Hernando and Pasco counties sinkhole claims have exceeded premiums for sinkhole coverage.