Volume 5 Number 20
May 16, 2008
week wildfires ravaged parts of Central Florida, damaging property, homes
and land. A State of Emergency was declared on Monday, and the brave men and
women of the fire
service responded heroically. Because of their valiant efforts, countless
homes, buildings, and lives were saved. State Fire Marshal Alex Sink toured
the wildfire areas on Tuesday, encouraging state and local authorities to
continue fighting the fires while aggressively investigating the causes.
Fire Marshal Alex Sink dispatched eleven Fire Investigators and
equipment to the area to assist local law enforcement, Department of
Agriculture Law Enforcement, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement
in the investigation of the wildland fires in Brevard County.
Investigators suspect arson in many of the fires and apprehended a subject
this week suspected in at least one case. Arson is a serious criminal act
that can destroy lives and property. Throughout the state last week, the
State Fire Marshal’s office held events recognizing Arson Awareness Week, in
an effort to inform and engage the public in fire prevention and
preparation. For more information on the role of the State Fire Marshal
CFO SINK OFFERS INSURANCE ADVICE TO FLORIDIANS AFFECTED
This past week as wildfires threatened homes in Brevard,
Volusia and Glades Counties, CFO Sink offered the following insurance advice
to homeowners affected by the wildfires:
If forced to evacuate your home, let your
agent or insurance company know your temporary forwarding address and
Keep all receipts for meals, lodging and
other expenses directly due to being evacuated and call your agent to
find out if the Additional Living Expense coverage on your homeowners
If you return to find your home damaged,
call your insurance agent immediately and make emergency repairs to
prevent further damage. Document the damage and repairs
in writing and with receipts and photos.
Maintain copies of your household
inventory and other documentation, including photos, to assist the
adjuster in assessing the value of the destroyed property.
For help contacting your agent or insurance
company regarding filing a claim, or to ensure that an insurance
adjuster you are dealing with is licensed, call the department's
Consumer Helpline at 1-877-My-FL-CFO.
Beware of fly-by-night repair businesses.
Hire licensed and reputable service people
CFO SINK: PASCO COUNTY COUPLE ARRESTED FOR STEALING NEARLY $200,000 FROM
AN 89-YEAR OLD WOMAN
Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink announced the
arrest of a Pasco County couple for allegedly deceiving an 89-year-old woman
out of nearly $200,000 and using it toward the purchase of a million dollar
The couple faces four felony charges: grand theft over $100,000, crimes
against the elderly, conspiracy, and operating an unlicensed and false
entity as a conduit to defraud their victims.
“This is a horrendous example of two people who preyed upon a senior who
trusted them with her life savings,” said CFO Sink. “I commend our insurance
fraud detectives for their work in going after criminals who defraud our
seniors and bringing them to justice.”
CFO Sink and BBC's Nik Gowing
Directorate General for Water
of the Netherlands Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management,
with CFO Sink
AMSTERDAM CONFERENCE FEATURES CFO SINK ON
BBC WORLD DEBATE
CFO Alex Sink
was invited to attend the Amsterdam Global Conference on Sustainability
and Transparency, where over 1,000 international thought leaders,
experts and practitioners on the topic of sustainability and
transparency convened for three days of lively discussion sponsored by
the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the City of Amsterdam. Her
trip was sponsored and supported by the non-profit organization GRI.
Climate change is topping the international agenda and fueling debate
about sustainability, particularly the role of business in mitigating
The diverse and engaging program culminated in a BBC World News Debate
that will be broadcast on the BBC World News channel this weekend,
moderated by BBC presenter Nik Gowing. As a member of the panel, CFO
Sink discussed the financial risks of climate change for investors.
|Left to right, CFO Sink, BBC's
Nik Gowing and Deputy Chief of Staff Kathy Baughman McLeod of
CFO Sink's office.
The debate topic: "How accountable is
The World Debate asks whether companies,
already forced to report on their finances, should also have to reveal
details of their impact on the environment and society? How transparent
do we expect companies to be and can we trust them to come clean? Can
openness and profitability go hand in hand?
The panel : Alessandro Carlucci, CEO Natura; Gerd Leipold, Executive
Director of Greenpeace International; Maud Olofsson, Deputy Prime
Minister of Sweden; Sir Michael Rake, Chairman of British Telecom;
Florida CFO Alex Sink and Bruno Prior, Director of Summerleaze, a
renewable energy company.
MY SAFE FLORIDA HOME PROGRAM NEARS 35,000 GRANTS
Program will continue offering free wind inspections until it reaches
goal of 400,000
Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink today announced that the My Safe
Florida Home (MSFH) program is projecting it will exceed the Florida
Legislature’s goal of approving 35,000 homeowners for grants by the end of
May. The first-come, first-served program will stop accepting new grant
applications at that time. MSFH will continue to work with homeowners
currently making improvements to their homes.
The MSFH program will transition to an inspection-focused program beginning
June 2008, offering free wind inspections for eligible homeowners until it
reaches the Legislature’s goal of performing 400,000 inspections or until
the program sunsets in June 2009.
"With hurricane season less than one month away, I encourage Floridians to
sign up for a free wind inspection to learn how to harden their homes
against hurricane damage,” said CFO Alex Sink, who oversees the Department
of Financial Services. “The response from homeowners has been overwhelming,
and I thank the Legislature for creating this program and allowing us to
enable more than 35,000 Floridians to make their homes more
CLYDE GASKINS RECOGNIZED BY
CFO SINK FOR FIFTY YEARS IN STATE GOVERNMENT
At this week's Cabinet meeting, Florida Chief
Financial Officer Alex Sink offered a resolution honoring Clyde Gaskins, who
has been a state employee in Florida in the Department’s of Insurance,
General Services and Financial Services for the past 50 years.
Gaskins began his career with the State of
Florida in 1958, in the former Department of Insurance with a beginning
salary of $225 per month. Gaskins has outlasted 12 Governors and eight
Insurance Commissioners. According to the Division of Retirement, there are
only five state employees on the retired payroll who have had more years of
service than Clyde.
During his many years in the data processing
area, Clyde Gaskins has observed significant innovations in hardware and
software technologies, as well as milestones in areas such as commercial
applications and artificial intelligence.
Serving the State of Florida with
distinction, Clyde Gaskins has earned the respect and admiration of his
peers, his community and the State of Florida. And, Clyde has no plans to
Calabro of Florida TaxWatch addressed the Cabinet meeting about the
Prudential Financial Davis Productivity Awards on Tuesday.
CFO SINK RECOGNIZES PRUDENTIAL FINANCIAL
DAVIS PRODUCTIVITY AWARDS
At a meeting of the Florida Cabinet, Florida Chief Financial Officer
Alex Sink offered a resolution recognizing the Prudential Financial
Davis Productivity Awards, which honors state employees who increase
public service productivity and promote innovative ideas.
Once a year, the Davis Productivity
Awards recognize employees who have gone beyond the call of duty to
provide efficient and high quality service. The awards promote
innovation and maximize service to Floridians.
This year marks the 20th year for the Davis Productivity Awards,
presented by Prudential Financial. Since its inception, more than 12,000
state employees have been nominated for producing $5.9 billion dollars
of added value to Florida’s taxpayers.
Idea of the Week
Idea: Fight Leaks
Your expensive cooled air might be
leaking right out of your house through drafty windows and doors. Your
heating and air conditioning ducts are another way that cool air can be
easily lost, making your air conditioner work harder than it should.
Insulating and sealing windows and doors will save energy costs in summer
and winter months. Many air conditioning and heating ducts may develop
leaks over time. Have your ducts properly sealed and insulated and you could
save as much as 10% in energy costs according to the Environmental
Protection Agency. If you think your duct system is leaky, have it checked
out by a Heating, Ventilation and Air-conditioning (HVAC) technician.
CFO SPONSORS CABINET RESOLUTION ON
BIKE FLORIDA AND 15 YEARS OF RIDING
At this week's meeting of the
Florida Cabinet, Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink offered a
resolution recognizing Bike Florida, a not-for
profit organization dedicated to providing education and awareness
programs, promoting bicycle safety and offering bicycling opportunities
for Floridians and visitors. Established in 1994, Bike Florida
encourages bicycling as an alternative mode of travel with the increased
awareness of climate change impacts and expense of individual
Bicycling is a low cost recreational
activity that can be appreciated at any age and provides an excellent
physical activity that increases heart health.
Florida’s system of greenways and trails, funded by preservation
dollars, allow bicyclists to utilize hundreds of miles of access in a
safe and aesthetically beautiful environment. Bike Florida is
celebrating its 15th year of providing springtime week-long bicycling
tours throughout Florida with an emphasis on visiting rural communities.
CFO SINK ADDRESSES LAW DAY IN WAKULLA COUNTY
Monday marked the 16th Annual Seafood Cookout in honor of Law
Enforcement Appreciation Month in Wakulla County. CFO Sink joined Wakulla
County Sheriff David Harvey, Wakulla Bank President and event sponsor Walter
Dodson, and local residents in honoring three law enforcement officers for
their excellence during 2008.
- Law Enforcement Officer of the Year – 2008
Sgt./ Lt. of Road Patrol Ronald Cexton “Boonie” Mitchell, Wakulla County
- Correctional Officer of the Year – 2008
Booking Sgt. Julie Martin, Wakulla County Sheriffs Office
- Citizens-Volunteers in support of law enforcement for
Sheriff’s Mounted Posse and the men & women of the Sheriff’s Reserve
THE GREATER NAPLES CHAMBER OF COMMERCE WELCOMES CFO SINK
CFO Sink spoke to a
crowd of about 100 at a Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce breakfast on
Thursday, addressing the current economic climate in Florida, the most
recent legislative session, and financial risks facing Floridians.
CFO Sink thanked
chamber members for their contributions to our state. The Greater Naples
Chamber of Commerce, an organization of more than 1,700 members
representing some 67,000 employees, plays a crucial role in promoting
the area's business and professional community through public policy and
business advocacy, leadership programs, executive business forums and
sessions, and enhanced member benefits and service.
Read more about the
event in the Naples Daily News,
Light at end of Florida’s economic tunnel exists but still far away,
state officials says
||VISIT TO THE AVE MARIA
CFO Sink took a tour of the
Ave Maria community and spent much of the time on the environmental
aspects, learning more about the Rural Lands Stewardship Program
From left to right, Tom Jones, Blake
Gable, CFO Sink, and Katie Sproul, at the Ave Maria community in eastern
Collier County. All three accompanying the CFO are with the Barron Collier Company.