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Legislative Support for Rate Relief Building

3/1/2006

CONTACT: Tami Torres or Bob Lotane
(850) 413-2842

NEW PORT RICHEY – Today, Florida Senator Mike Fasano added his name to the growing list of legislators who support Tom Gallagher's plan for immediate insurance rate-relief. Senator Fasano publicly expressed support for earmarking surplus sales tax revenue to offset insurance assessments during a Town Hall meeting he hosted with the Department of Financial Services. Tom Gallagher, Florida's chief financial officer, who was also on hand to assist homeowners and discuss insurance concerns, issued the following statement: 
 
"I am extremely pleased to learn that another legislator has offered public support for my proposal to refund surplus tax revenue to Florida's homeowners. I believe our record budget surplus can effectively fund all of Florida's priorities, and still leave enough to provide sensible insurance rate-relief to Florida's families.
 
"I will continue to ask the Legislature to use surplus tax revenue derived from hurricane reconstruction costs to provide rate-relief for all Floridians. That money, which belongs to the taxpayers in the first place, is the first step in helping Floridians deal with insurance assessments, hurricane repairs, or hurricane preparation for this year's season."
 
Gallagher's proposal is part of a comprehensive package of insurance reforms he announced last November to provide immediate rate-relief, expand access to property coverage, stabilize insurance rates and expedite the rebuilding process.

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As a statewide elected officer of the Florida Cabinet, Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher oversees the Department of Financial Services, a multi-division state agency responsible for management of state funds and unclaimed property, assisting consumers who request information and help related to financial services, and investigating financial fraud. Gallagher also serves as the State Fire Marshal.