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Senate Approves Watered Down Citizens Insurance Bill

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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami) – Some good news for property owners who are covered by Citizens Property Insurance.

On Thursday, the Senate approved a watered down House bill to reform the state backed insurance provider. It now goes to Gov. Rick Scott for his consideration.

Under the measure, current property owners who have Citizens will not be forced into private sector coverage. They will likely see a hike of only 10 percent when it’s time for their policy renewal.

“The Legislature has provided a great tool in our effort to return Citizens to its original purpose as the insurer of last resort,” said Citizens’ CEO Barry Gilway. “Through the clearinghouse, many policyholders will be able to find more comprehensive coverage at a lower price in the private market. That, in turn, reduces the likelihood and amount of assessments on all Florida policyholders face in the event of a major storm.”

New customers will not be able to get a policy from “insurer of last resort” if a private insurer offers coverage that is more expensive than that charged by Citizens.

The bill also caps policy coverage from $1 million to $700,000 over the next several years.

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