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Report: House Passes Toned Down Citizens Reform Bill

TALLHASSEE (CBSMiami) – The Florida House has passed a stripped down version of a Citizens Insurance reform bill by a margin of 111-6. The House version doesn't hit new policyholders as hard as the Senate version.

According to CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald, the Senate version of the bill would have increased rates for new policyholders by up to 100 percent in some areas. It also included provision allowing Citizens to loan out money to private insurers and making the company's director a gubernatorial appointee.

The House's version would not include any rate increases, but would force any customer who received a comparable private insurance rate to take the private insurance. The Senate bill would do the same.

Both proposals will forbid new policies for homes built right on the water or seaward of the coastal construction control line, according to the Herald. The bills would also limit the maximum coverage to somewhere between $500,000 and $700,000 with an exact amount still to be negotiated.

The competing bills also introduced new accountability measures into Citizens after several scandals broke over excess spending and other corporate misconduct last year, according to the Herald.

Both bills will have to be negotiated between both chambers before a final bill is put together.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Miami Herald contributed to this report.)

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