Senator Book, District 35 — Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 7, 2023
Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book Introduces Legislation to Lower Homeowners Insurance Costs for Low-Income Seniors
In response to the escalating property insurance crisis, exacerbated by skyrocketing housing costs and an increasingly unstable insurance market, Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book is fighting to protect Florida’s seniors by introducing SB 348, entitled Insurance Rebate Program for Low-Income Seniors. Recognizing the urgency of the situation, Senator Book's bill would require the Florida Department of Financial Services to create an insurance rebate program to provide low-income seniors relief from the rising costs of homeowners insurance in our state.
"In the face of Florida’s ongoing property insurance crisis, we’re fighting to provide relief to low-income seniors from skyrocketing premiums," says Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book. "Our state economy is booming, but seniors in my district are on the brink of losing their homes because they cannot afford property insurance. That is just not acceptable. And it’s why I’m working to ensure seniors who live on fixed incomes can age in place with the dignity and security they deserve.”
To qualify for the program, you must be a Florida resident over 65 years old, with an income less than 200% of the federal poverty level. The program would provide a rebate equal to 10% of the person's insurance premium on their primary residence only. The bill would take effect July 1, 2024.
"This crisis not only threatens the financial security of all Floridians but also undermines the safety and stability of our local communities,” says Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book. “This program is not just about addressing an insurance crisis; it's about safeguarding the well-being of our most vulnerable Floridians, ensuring they are not left behind."
Over the past several months, in collaboration with the Florida Senate Democratic Caucus, Leader Lauren Book hosted a virtual town hall series with expert guests – including Florida’s Commissioner of the Office of Insurance Regulation, the CEO of Citizens Property Insurance, and leaders from the Federal Association for Insurance Reform, Weiss Ratings Company, former Senator Jeff Brandes, and more – addressing questions, concerns, and fears from Florida residents who are seeking answers and leadership. Many who participated were seniors seeking cost relief in an unaffordable market. The proposed Insurance Rebate Program for Low-Income Seniors, with its targeted relief and commitment to financial accessibility, is a beacon of hope for those facing the challenges of skyrocketing housing costs, reduced coverage options, and increasingly stringent eligibility criteria that have left many homeowners, renters, and businesses struggling to secure comprehensive and affordable insurance.