19.6% Workers Comp Rate Increase Coming

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) announced July 1 that the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) filed an amended rate filing to address a third legal change affecting Florida’s workers’ compensation system. This amended filing increases NCCI’s initial proposed combined average rate increase from 17.1 percent to 19.6 percent.

Individual projected rate impacts for all three recent legal changes include the following:

* A 2.2 percent projected rate increase for the June 9th Florida Supreme Court decision in the case of Westphal v. City of St. Petersburg, in which the Florida Supreme Court found the 104-week statutory limitation on temporary total disability benefits in Section 440.15(2)(a), Florida Statutes, unconstitutional because it causes a statutory gap in benefits in violation of an injured worker’s constitutional right of access to courts. The Supreme Court reinstated the 260-week limitation in effect prior to the 1994 law change.

* A 15 percent projected rate increase for the April 28th Florida Supreme Court decision in the case of Castellanos v. Next Door Company, which  found the mandatory attorney fee schedule in Section 440.34, Florida Statutes, unconstitutional as a violation of due process under both the Florida and United States Constitutions.

* A 1.8 percent projected rate increase related to updates within the Florida Workers’ Compensation Health Care Provider Reimbursement Manual (HCPR Manual) per Senate Bill 1402. The manual became effective on July 1, 2016.

NCCI is proposing an effective date of October 1, 2016 for new and renewal workers’ compensation policies and that the 19.6 percent rate increase apply to all workers’ compensation policies in effect as of October 1, 2016 on a pro-rata basis for the remainder of each policy’s term.

OIR has scheduled a public rate hearing for August 16, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. to give NCCI an opportunity to discuss the filing and interested parties and other stakeholders the ability to provide testimony or comments. The hearing will be held in the Jim King Committee Room, 401 Senate Office Building, 404 South Monroe Street, Tallahassee, Florida. A media advisory with more details will be released at a later date.

NCCI is a licensed rating organization authorized to make rate filings on behalf of workers’ compensation insurance companies in Florida. The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation has primary responsibility for regulation, compliance and enforcement of statutes related to the business of insurance and the monitoring of industry markets.

Insurance Journal, July 5, 2016

Happy Fourth of July!

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Over 4000 Facebook Likes: Thank you!

Thank You America's Heros

Letter From DBPR Secretary with Summer Reminder

Dear Friends,

Summers in Florida can get hot! During the summer months, many Floridians look to hire contractors to add to or restore their swimming pools. As May is National Water Safety Month, I want to remind Florida residents of the importance of hiring only licensed pool contractors.

DBPR’s Construction Industry Licensing Board is responsible for licensing and regulating contractors throughout the state of Florida. As you prepare for the summer months ahead, it is important to understand when a license is required for a pool service. Essentially, any time an individual is hired and installs or takes apart equipment that is attached to or used for cleaning or water treatment, a license is required. Pool cleaning and basic water treatments do not require a DBPR license.

If you are looking to hire a pool contractor this summer, it is imperative to use good judgment before signing a contract. A few simple rules to follow to avoid contracting scams include requesting multiple references, verifying prospective licenses, checking references and getting everything in writing (i.e. completion date, total cost, description of repair work). Licenses can be verified by visiting www.myfloridalicense.com, calling (850) 487-1395 or downloading the free DBPR Mobile app available in the iTunes and Google Play app stores.

Swimming pools and spas are places where families and friends spend time together to cool off from the summer heat. Enjoy your time by the pool and feel confident jumping into summer knowing you hired a licensed pool contractor!

Sincerely,

Ken Lawson�s Signature

Ken Lawson
Secretary

Department of Business and
Professional Regulation
1940 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Customer Contact Center:
850.487.1395

www.MyFloridaLicense.com

CAI Recommends Passing The Home Act

The HOME Act, H. R. 4696, introduced by Representatives Eshoo (D-CA) and Thompson (D-CA), allows for an income tax deduction for homeowners association assessments and fees. Specifically, the bill provides for homeowners in community associations - condominiums, housing cooperatives and homeowners associations - who earn $115,000 or less in annual income, to deduct up to $5,000 of their association fees and assessments from their federal tax liability.

Click here to contact your Representative today and urge them to co-sponsor the HOME Act!

“The HOME Act recognizes that millions of middle class homeowners are struggling to keep up with rising household expenses like child care, college tuition, health care, mortgage and community assessments,” Eshoo said. “The Home Act can go a long way by providing relief from this tax burden on millions of middle class families.”

This bill recognizes the financial inequity facing homeowners in a community association as they pay property taxes and community assessments but receive many municipal services from their community association not the municipality. The HOME Act would lighten the financial burden of homeowners and make homeownership more affordable and attainable for more families.

If you need additional information about this issue, please contact us anytime at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (888) 224-4321.

© Copyright Community Associations Institute. All rights reserved.

Pickin' Picnic Coming May 7th

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2016 PICKIN' PICNIC


Music festival? Food festival? Beer festival? Why not all three?! Pickin' Picnic combines everything into one big, family-friendly celebration. Grab your lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy your favorite craft beers, food trucks, and local bands. The best part? Admission is FREE!

It's all happening Saturday, May 7, 2016, at the Bradenton Riverwalk Pavilion.  Come visit with C&S at the C&S tent!

2016 PICKIN' PICNIC LINEUP

2:00 p.m. — Free Craft-Beer Tasting & Food Truck Battle, hosted by Kirsten Sponseller from SarasotaDay.com
3:00 p.m. — Sam Robertson
4:00 p.m. — Michael Snayd Music
5:15 p.m. — Lady and Gentleman
6:30 p.m. — The Western Sons
7:45 p.m. — Dropin Pickup
9:00 p.m. — Good Graeff

PRESENTED BY
BB&T

STAGE SPONSORS
C&S Community Management Services, Inc.
Heintz & Becker

For more information:  https://www.facebook.com/pickinpicnic/?fref=photo

C&S Presents Board Certification Class May 3rd

C&S is presenting a Board Certification class for board members of their client communities on May 3, at 6:30 PM at the Comfort Inn located at the intersection of I-75 and Highway 64.  New board members are required by Statute to become certified within 90 days of being elected or appointed to the board.  

Class materials will be provided and seating is limited so we must know in advance that you wish to attend.  Please call Janet Fernandez at 941-758-9454 ext. 121.  C&S provides the Board Certification Class several times a year for our clients.   Our annual Board Member Forum is in February of each year and is open to all communities.  There is no charge to attend any C&S event. 

C&S Wins Multiple Awards, Thanks Clients

 

The C&S staff sincerely thanks our clients for all your support and taking time to vote for C&S.  

 

2016 Awards Low Res

Update: Internet/Email Outage

Internet/Email outage is still in progress at 5:00 PM. Frontier Communications is saying on the news that everything is fixed however there is still no service in at least Manatee County. We will keep you posted.

UPDATE:  C&S email and internet is working again! Problems were finally corrected early Saturday morning.

Verizon FIOS Is Down For Much of Florida

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The seamless transfer that Frontier Communications promised for taking over Verizon FIOS has been anything but seamless. C&S has been without all data lines since 6:30 this morning.

If you have emailed C&S today, we have not only not received your email, we do not yet know when and if we will.

Once FIOS is restored in Florida it would be a good idea to email us again if you do not get a reply. We are sorry for the inconvenience. If it helps you, C&S phone lines are working

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Ouch, Itch, Scratch, It’s Almost Bug Season!

Whether you’re attacked while working in the garden, enjoying a picnic in the park or lounging by the pool, bug bites and stings are an inevitable summer annoyance. At best, bites and stings can be uncomfortable for a few days; at worst, they can be a serious, life-threatening hazard.

Here are some tips on how to relieve the itch or sting and when to know if you should seek medical attention:

If the bite or sting is mildly painful or itchy, apply over-the-counter medication that contains Benadryl or cortisone for topical relief. Other home remedies, like a applying a paste made from baking soda and water, dabbing on ammonia with a cotton ball, soaking in oatmeal baths or even applying toothpaste to the site may also provide relief.

Whatever you do, don’t scratch. This can cause an infection and leave a scar. And it won’t relieve the itch or sting.

If you feel faint, nauseous, dizzy or disoriented, or if you experience rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing or your lips, tongue or throat swell, call 911 immediately. These symptoms indicate a severe allergy to the insect’s venom. Administer an Epi-pen (injectable epinephrine) if one is available and administer CPR if symptoms worsen before emergency personnel arrive. After the episode, follow up with a physician who can determine an allergy prevention treatment.

Stay alert for delayed symptoms around the bite or sting, like redness or swelling, which could indicate an infection or other condition. And see a doctor right away if you have a headache, fever or joint pain within a few days of being bitten. Some insects, like ticks and mosquitoes, can infect their victims with serious, flulike illnesses, such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Lyme disease and West Nile virus, which only a physician can diagnose and treat.

Most important, use insect repellant when outdoors and wear light-weight, light-colored clothing over arms, legs and feet to keep insects off your skin. And avoid wearing perfume and fragrances, which can attract bugs.

C&S Ready For CA Day

C&S is set up and ready for CA Day on Thursday.  If you are wondering where our trademark money tree is, well it is coming and will be there as usual.  Be sure to fill out your entry form to win the money! Free handouts too!  Hope to see everyone Thursday at Booth 404!

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CA Day March 10th

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Venice Conference Room Finished

For our Venice clients, the office conference room remodeling is complete.  

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Board Member Forum This Week

Seats are available so there is still time for you to come...

C&S Sponsors Humane Society of Manatee Co.

C&S is very proud to again be a sponsor of the Humane Society of Manatee County.  

 

DBPR Unlicensed Activity Search in Manatee/Sarasota Counties

Dear Friends, 

Over the past few weeks, Floridians statewide have been affected by unexpected tornadoes and rainstorms that resulted in devastating damage to their homes or businesses. Structural damage resulting from tornadoes or severe storms often requires construction services performed by licensed construction contractors. After the emotional toll that natural disasters may cause, it’s crucial that consumers protect themselves from unlicensed individuals to avoid further financial stress or safety concerns. 

Unfortunately, it’s common for unlicensed individuals to take advantage of homeowners after a natural disaster strikes by offering to make repairs for dubiously low prices, performing substandard or shoddy work and often leaving without finishing a job. Our goal at DBPR is to make it easier for you to make good decisions for your family when selecting a construction contractor to make repairs to your damaged home or business. 

Prior to hiring a contractor, signing a contract or making any payments, consumers should contact their insurance company to confirm coverage, verify the state license of a contractor, get written estimates from several licensed contractors and always check references. These simple steps can help ensure your home is taken care of and repairs are kept to professional standards. Once you’ve identified the licensed contractor you’d like to hire, make sure the written contract includes the contractor’s name, street address, telephone number, state license number, a description of work to be completed, completion date, warranty agreements and a notice of consumers’ rights under the Florida Homeowners’ Construction Recovery Fund for contracts involving general, residential and building contractors. 

In response to the widespread tornado damage, DBPR investigators are actively canvassing the Sarasota, Manatee and Cape Coral areas to catch unlicensed individuals attempting to prey on homeowners with tornado damage and reminding consumers to verify licenses and report suspected unlicensed activity. I am urging consumers in these areas to use caution when making hiring decisions and report any suspected unlicensed activity directly to DBPR by calling the Unlicensed Activity Hotline at 866-532-1440 or using the free DBPR Mobile app. 

Unlicensed activity can cause undue harm to both homeowners and licensed professionals. By remaining alert and keeping a lookout for unlicensed activity following a storm or natural disaster, you can help DBPR protect the comfort and safety of our neighbors, families and friends. My heart goes out to the families and businesses impacted by the recent storm damage, and I wish to remind consumers that DBPR is here to help alleviate the unnecessary financial and safety risks associated with unlicensed individuals. 

Sincerely,

Ken Lawson�s Signature

Ken Lawson
Secretary

Department of Business and
Professional Regulation
1940 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Customer Contact Center:
850.487.1395

www.MyFloridaLicense.com

PSA Drug Free Manatee

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Happy New Year!!

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Bradenton

4301 32nd Street West
Suite A-20
Bradenton, Florida 34205
Phone: (941) 758-9454
Fax: (941) 753-3062

Sarasota

31 Sarasota Center Blvd
Suite B
Sarasota, Florida 34240
Phone: (941) 377-3419
Fax: (941) 377-6218

Saint Petersburg

111 2nd Avenue North-East
Suite 900
Saint Petersburg, Florida 33701
Phone: (727) 456-0027
Fax: (866) 890-0548

Venice

871 Venetia Bay Boulevard
Suite 230
Venice, Florida 34285
Phone: (941) 786-3552
Fax: (866) 890-0548
©2017 C & S Community Management Services, Inc., AAMC All rights reserved.