Flood Insurance Bill Heads to Scott

Private flood insurance policies could become more widely available in Florida after the Legislature gave final approval Thursday to a bill aimed at jump-starting the market through looser regulation than exists for conventional homeowners’ coverage.

Senators voted 30-3 for a House version of the flood insurance bill that included some additional consumer protections and sent the measure to Gov. Rick Scott.

Lawmakers also gave final approval Thursday to a watered-down Citizens Property Insurance reform bill that is much less aggressive than previous attempts to shrink the state-run company.

The flood insurance legislation sets up a framework for selling private flood policies in Florida and allows insurers to increase rates with limited state oversight through 2019. The bill also makes it easier for unregulated “surplus lines” companies to write flood policies through 2017.

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