Every day here in Central Florida, our office listens to voters who are facing real issues affecting their lives. I hear from single moms struggling to find childcare and seniors living on a fixed income concerned about rising utility costs. People of all ages who are forced to choose between putting food on their table or a roof over their heads.
We hear the word freedom a lot here in the state of Florida, but often ordinary people don’t have the freedom they deserve to achieve their version of the American dream, no matter how hard they try or how often Do it. The right thing for their families. Floridians should be able to count on their government to provide support, but once again, those in power in our state have favored their corporate donors to cut costs in ways that they actually struggle to move forward. Can help people doing it.
Reading this I don’t need anyone to tell me that the cost of housing in Central Florida is very high. In the past year alone, rents have increased by nearly 20% in Orlando, where workers are paid the lowest median hourly wages of any major metropolitan area in the United States.
One of the biggest drivers of this housing affordability crisis is the astronomical cost of homeowners insurance in Florida, a problem that affects not only homeowners, but renters whose landlords cover those costs. pass them on when their lease is up for renewal. In a state where the cost of home owner’s insurance is more than three times the national average, and where rates have more than doubled in the past four years, that’s not exactly sustainable.
Twice in the past year, its legislators have been called back to Tallahassee for special sessions to try to address the problem, and twice now they have passed reforms that have passed before, ensuring lower costs for consumers. Meet the needs of the insurance industry. In May, the legislature handed out a $2 billion bailout to private insurers with no guarantee of lower rates, despite the best efforts of People-First lawmakers, who have sought changes that should help reduce the cost of insurance premiums and stabilize the market. stressed for. ,
Now, once again, a package was passed during our recent special session that not only provides private insurance companies with an additional $1 billion of taxpayer money, but also makes it more difficult for policyholders to sue when claims are settled gives.
Those recovering from the destruction of Hurricane Ian are already fighting their insurance providers for what they’re owed, and our neighbors in the panhandle that were hit hard by Hurricane Michael still haven’t received their claims paid. It is ridiculous that we make it easy for these bad actors to continue raising prices for Floridians while leaving Floridians to fend for themselves.
Not only this, this law will force people with low-cost civilian insurance plans to pay up to 20% more in the private insurance market. For people like my 85-year-old mother-in-law, who is covered by the Nationals as a last resort because her previous private insurance plan was cancelled, this will be a huge burden she cannot afford.
Florida leaders could seek solutions that would lower rates, rein in exorbitant salaries for insurance company executives and stop the fraudulent practice of using affiliated companies to hide profits. Instead, they chose a path that fulfills the insurance industry’s wish list while our true constituents, hard-working Floridians and those who have earned a secure retirement, foot the bill.
It’s not fair, it’s not right, and it’s not what you deserve from your state government. As Florida’s homeowner’s insurance market continues to collapse, remember who fought for you and who fought for the private insurance corporations that are making our state unaffordable for the people who live here.