Eager to learn more
about the job she will step into in January, Florida’s Chief Financial
Officer-elect Alex Sink spent today meeting with me and several employees of
the Department of Financial Services.
GALLAGHER ANNOUNCES FREE HOME INSPECTIONS TO START IN CHARLOTTE, COLLIER and MONROE COUNTIES
Tom Gallagher, Florida’s chief financial officer, announced that free home inspections will soon begin in Charlotte, Collier and Monroe counties for nearly 700 homeowners who applied through the My Safe Florida Home program. The program, funded with $250 million by the Florida Legislature, was created to better protect Floridians by strengthening their homes against hurricanes and to reduce the state’s exposure to hurricane damage.
“Before this hurricane season ends, my goal is to provide 12,000 free home inspections across the state to help Floridians strengthen their homes and better protect their families against catastrophic storms,” said Gallagher, who oversees the Department of Financial Services which administers the My Safe Florida Home program.
Gallagher said that homeowners in Charlotte, Collier and Monroe counties who have already submitted completed applications will be contacted by a department-approved inspector to schedule an inspection. The department has already received 1,128 completed applications from homeowners in these three counties. Future applicants will be served with additional funding of the My Safe Florida Home program. CONTINUED
FLORIDA FIREFIGHTERS LEARN LATEST TECHNIQUES AT THE GREAT FLORIDA FIRE SCHOOL|
Firefighters from throughout Florida gathered last week at the South Florida Community College for the Great Florida Fire School, where they received hands-on and classroom training in a variety of subjects. More than 170 students attended 29 different classes for a total of 5,176 student contact hours.
In its twelfth year, the fire school is a traveling training program intended to save firefighters from having to travel to other programs that often can be miles away. Courses included wildland firefighting operations, LP gas fires, firefighter safety, extrication, fire investigations, explosive device recognition and safety, emergency response to terrorism, rope rescue, emergency medical services, public education and stress management.
these professionals the same classroom and practical training that they
would get at the Florida State Fire College in Ocala,” said State Fire Marshal
Tom Gallagher. “By bringing the training to them, it saves their
departments the expense of travel and lodging and keeps them near the
communities they serve.”
SENIORS REMINDED OF MEDICARE
PRESCRIPTION DRUG OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD
The open enrollment period for Medicare health and prescription drug coverage starts November 15, 2006, and Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher is encouraging consumers to take advantage of new resources available on-line, including a comparison of Medicare options and a Medicare prescription drug plan finder at www.medicare.gov.
During the open enrollment period, seniors will have the opportunity to join the Medicare plan or make a change in their health and prescription drug plans. If an individual lacks coverage and doesn’t sign up during open enrollment, a penalty of as much as one-percent per month could be added to the monthly premium. Open enrollment ends December 31.
Gallagher reminds seniors to also keep these tips in mind:
CENTRAL FLORIDA TORNADO CAUSES DAMAGE|
A tornado skipped across the Orlando area
and touched down
Seminole County causing significant damage to homes and vehicles. Officials say the tornado was selective, hitting one home and skipping another before jumping
the road and causing damage in another neighborhood.
OUT FOR UNLICENSED INSURERS|
As a business or an individual looking for health insurance, do your homework to protect yourself against potential scams.
Small businesses may be vulnerable to health-insurance scams because of increased health-care costs, difficulty finding coverage, and lack of knowledge about the subject.
According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, states are finding it difficult to regulate association health plans that reach across state lines. Some scams have duped consumers and businesses into paying for insurance that doesn't exist.
Fake insurance brokers might mimic the names
of legitimate companies, and
licensed insurance agents have been tricked into selling fake plans. Scams ultimately affect everyone from unpaid
hospitals and health-care providers to consumers
who are left with unaffordable health-care
$757,000 AWARDED FOR STATEWIDE HEALTH