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15 posts from November 19, 2012

November 19, 2012

Broward GOP chair Richard DeNapoli won't seek re-election

Broward Republican Executive Committee chair Richard DeNapoli said he won't seek re-election to the internal party post in December due to a job opportunity in another part of the state. DeNapoli now works at a bank in Broward-- he hasn't yet revealed the new job.

Other potential chair candidates are Rico Petrocelli, who is the current BREC executive director, and Karen Harrington, who lost to U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Weston) by a landslide in her second attempt. The chair is currently an unpaid position -- Petrocelli, a former Plantation council member, is paid about $36,000 a year as the director. Petrocelli wasn't flat out calling for the next chair to be paid but he said he would raise that issue with the executive committee and the membership.

"I really think I can bring consensus and teamwork," Petrocelli said.

Former Davie town mayor Tom Truex who narrowly lost his bid against DeNapoli last year told the Miami Herald that he hadn't heard about DeNapoli's decision  until we alerted him. Truex said he will now think about whether he wants to run.

The November loss for Broward Republican Sheriff Al Lamberti leaves at-large school board member Donna Korn as the only countywide elected Republican in Broward. (Katie Leach, also a Republican, won her district school board seat race.)

It is not clear when the Republican activists will elect a new chair. Petrocelli says it will be Dec. 3 but DeNapoli said it could be at anytime in December.

The chair serves as a spokesperson for  Broward Republicans. It can be a time consuming and thankless gig -- chairs on both sides of the aisle tend to get blamed for losses while  credit is given directly to campaigns for successes. Broward Republicans are outnumbered two to one by Democrats in the county but the 250,000 registered Republican voters can influence the outcome of statewide races.



Insurance regulators approve option for cheaper mortgage modifications

Florida's Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty announced Monday that the Office of Insurance Regulation has approved a new, cheaper product for title insurance that could help shave costs for homeowners doing a mortgage modification.

“This product is being offered at a time when innovative solutions from the insurance industry are needed to assist businesses and consumers,” said  McCarty. “I appreciate the title insurance industry for taking the initiative on this effort.”

See the press release from the Office of Insurance Regulation below:

Continue reading "Insurance regulators approve option for cheaper mortgage modifications" »

Scott takes sides on Israel

Gov. Rick Scott issued the following statement in response to recent congressional resolutions on Israel:

“I commend Florida’s congressional delegation for supporting House Resolution 813 and Senate Resolution 599.  These important resolutions reiterate America’s unwavering support for Israel during this difficult time.  When I visited Israel last year, I learned firsthand of Hamas’ relentless campaign of terror against Israel’s southern cities.  Now, after a year in which Hamas has launched nearly 900 missile and rocket attacks, Israel has initiated defensive measures to protect its citizens.  Like all democracies, Israel has the inherent right to act in self-defense to end terrorist attacks.  I stand firmly with our ally Israel and offer my continued prayers for peace and security.”

Movers & Shakers: Putnam loses spox, prisons chief parts ways

Our blog cataloged lots of political changes last week, from legislative appointments to the downfall of could-have-been House Speaker Rep. Chris Dorworth, R-Lake Mary.

But we also want to make you aware of some changes that have been a tad more under the radar.

Putnam spox leaves for Duke/Progress Energy

Sterling Ivey, former flack for former Gov. Charlie Crist, is leaving his post as spokesman for Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam.

Continue reading "Movers & Shakers: Putnam loses spox, prisons chief parts ways" »

Bondi announces $3.6 billion in homeowner relief from banks

Five of the nation’s largest banks have provided $3.6 billion in mortgage relief for Floridians as part of a nationwide foreclosure settlement, Attorney General Pam Bondi announced Monday.

The mortgage settlement, announced in February, has provided mortgage relief to nearly 50,000 Floridians, according to a monitor of the national program program.

“Florida was one of only two states in the country that negotiated a guarantee in the settlement,” said Bondi, in a statement. “The fact that servicers report $3.6 billion in relief to Florida’s borrowers within the first eight months of implementation is a promising indication that obtaining a minimum commitment from the banks has been effective.”

The five mortgage lenders -- Bank of America JPMorgan Chase Ally Financial, Wells Fargo and Citimortgage – are beginning to fulfill the terms of a $25 billion settlement with 49 attorneys general over foreclosure abuses and “robo-signing.”

Continue reading "Bondi announces $3.6 billion in homeowner relief from banks" »