BAD MATH, BAD MANAGEMENT, OR JUST BAD ACTING
Carl Hiaasen makes a great point in today's Miami Herald, slamming Florida Power & Light for underestimating by $180 million costs related to the hurricanes last year, and now asking the state Public Service Commission to have consumers make up the difference on top of the average $2.09 monthly hurricane surcharge AND the average $3.49 monthly surcharge for higher fuel costs which have already been approved.
This request is regardless of the fact that in the fourth quarter of 2004, in spite of the four hurricanes that affected our state, FP&L earnings increased 34 percent, and that shareholders are already earning a comfortable 12.5% return on their investments.
And speaking of consumers getting short shrift, Florida Today of Melbourne asks legislators to resist the insurance industry lobby on the issue of hurricane reforms in today's editorial after it was decided to take some extra time to consider how to improve hurricane insurance laws.
But among those seemingly favouring insurance companies over the working Floridian: Chief Financial Office and probable gubernatorial candidate Tom Gallagher and Joint Select Committee on Hurricane Insurance members State Senator Mike Haridopolos (R - Melbourne) and State Representative Leslie Waters (R - St. Petersburg).
Adding to the whole hurricane insurance drama: Check out this post from last Monday at Pensacola Beach Blog, which has focused primarily on the Northwest Florida area in the aftermath of Hurricane Ivan. It has to do with the fact that the state-owned Citizens Property Insurance has taken back approximately 7,000 hurricane claims files that were handled improperly by subcontractor adjusting firms. The Pensacola News Journal ran this story about a week after it was written by Gannett News Service Tallhassee reporter Paige St. John. Thanks to Florida News for the heads up.