Dear Fellow Floridians:
In this challenging economy, there has been a surge of interest in
economic data. It seems that every time you turn on the TV, listen to the
radio or read a newspaper someone is commenting on or attempting to analyze
economic data. As your CFO, I wanted to create a publication that offered
Florida’s families and businesses straightforward, unbiased data on
That was the inspiration behind Florida’s Bottom Line, a quarterly,
interactive publication that will serve as a one-stop-shop for information
specifically about Florida’s economy. We have spent the past few months
working with our partners at the University of Florida’s Bureau Economic and
Business Research and the Florida Legislature’s Office of Economic and
Demographic Research to develop this new publication.
The first issue of Florida’s Bottom Line will appear in your e-mail box
soon, and I hope you will take the time to read it and give us your
feedback. My goal is that it will become your go-to source for economic data
and information on our state.
Chief Financial Officer
State of Florida
CFO Jeff Atwater Offers Free Workshops for Women’s Small Business Month
In today’s challenging economy, business owners need to do more with less
while expecting greater outcomes from their company finances. This week, CFO
Jeff Atwater announced the launch of a new financial literacy campaign, Your
Money Matter$, that will provide interactive financial education for small
business owners, seniors, military and their families, and young adults.
The initiative is being kicked off with a series of free Women’s Small
Business workshops as part of Women’s Small Business Month in October.
CFO Atwater has been touring the state talking to businesses and hearing
their struggles first hand. He believes these financial education workshops will
have a positive impact on the success of the participants, which in turn will
have a positive effect on their bottom line, as well as the overall economy.
These workshops will be offered in four cities, Tampa, Jacksonville, Ft.
Lauderdale and Orlando, and will address areas of financial concern,
specifically programs that will provide easy-to-understand training and
financial education that will increase knowledge and improve the success of
business not only locally, but across Florida.
Haven’t started your business yet? Not a woman business owner? That’s Okay.
CFO Atwater welcomes any small business owner to participate in these workshops.
here for workshop registration along with the dates and locations.
For additional information, visit www.MyFloridaCFO.com/Consumers or call the
Consumer Services Helpline at 1-877-My-FL-CFO (1-877-693-5236).
Put Your Financial Knowledge to the Test and Win an iPad2
In conjunction with his new Your Money Matter$ financial literacy campaign,
Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater has teamed up with VISA and the NFL
to encourage young Floridians to go the extra yard to secure a strong financial
future. As a part of the efforts to educate Florida’s future generations, CFO
Atwater will be holding a Financial Literacy social media campaign and giving
away an iPad2 donated by Visa.
The contest begins on Monday, October
3 and will run until Friday, October 7. To enter to win and for contest rules,
www.twitter.com/jeffatwater. Questions will be posted on these sites and the
first eligible participant to respond correctly will be entered to win the
Hillsborough County Votes to Put Brakes on Staged Accidents
Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater applauds the Hillsborough County
commissioners for taking the historic step last Wednesday of approving an
ordinance aimed at curbing the fraudulent accident clinics that drive PIP fraud.
The ordinance, which passed unanimously, increases oversight over automobile
accident clinics. These “PIP” clinics, defined as those which receive a
significant portion of their business from billing automobile insurance
companies, will need a county license to operate. This ordinance fills a void
currently found in Florida law, which exempts many of these clinics from state
Since 2009, Hillsborough County has made 127 arrests and
closed down 7 clinics for staged crashes, insurance fraud, patient brokering,
and other crimes.
“I support any push back to help stop PIP fraud and keep more money in the
pockets of honest, hard-working Floridians,” said CFO Jeff Atwater. “I
especially praise Commissioner Kevin Beckner, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s
Office and the National Insurance Crime Bureau for making this happen. My office
will continue to work with federal and local authorities to identify more ways
to stay ahead of this costly crime.”
PIP fraud is costing Floridians millions of dollars, which is passed on as
higher insurance premiums to honest drivers. Florida currently leads the nation
in suspected fraudulent personal injury claims, and has three of the top five
cities nationally - Orlando, Tampa, and Miami.
Anyone with information regarding suspected insurance fraud is asked to call
the department’s Division of Insurance Fraud at 1-800-378-0445. Individuals who
provide tips can remain anonymous and are eligible for a reward of up to $25,000
for information that directly leads to an arrest and conviction in an insurance