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Florida property insurance crisis to be addressed in special session, DeSantis announces

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida legislators will be called back to Tallahassee next month to address the state’s property insurance crisis, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Monday.

During a news conference in Jacksonville on Monday morning, the governor confirmed he would sign a proclamation this week to set dates in May for a special session on homeowners insurance.

“Issues like property insurance and trying to bring some sanity and stabilize and have a functioning market – I’m confident that we’re gonna be able to get that done,” Gov. DeSantis said.

The governor said he would be working with legislative leaders to set those dates for the session next month.

“And it will have – as the main focus – the reform of the property insurance market,” he said. “We may also address other issues that came close to getting across the finish line that maybe we can tweak and get there.”

State Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, had already started the process of forcing a special session without Gov. DeSantis or other legislative leaders. The maneuver he had started, polling his fellow lawmakers on whether or not a session should be called, advanced in the legislature last week.

DeSantis said at the time he supported Brandes’ move to force the special session.

Brandes had previously asked the governor to call a special session.

“If I was advising the governor, I would say, ‘listen if you don’t call a special session on this, you’re going to begin to own some of these rate increases,’” Brandes told 8 On Your Side last month.

DeSantis had said he would welcome a special session focused on fixing property insurance, and noted last week that, “clearly we have dysfunctions in that market that could be fixed.”

Hundreds of homeowners have reached out to 8 On Your Side‘s Mahsa Saeidi in past weeks, devastated by skyrocketing insurance premiums and concerned they would lose their homes.

Four property insurance bills were introduced during the regular legislative session to address the insurance crisis, but each one failed.

State legislators are already being called back to Tallahassee this week for a separate special session to handle the redrawing of the state’s congressional maps.

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