Friday, December 15, 2017
Business

Readers' comments on business news

Citizens premiums to rise 6.3% | Sept. 10

People can't afford to pay much more

Let's take a brief inventory of upcoming increases regarding property insurance premiums: Citizens to jump 6.3 percent next year, federal flood insurance projected to increase as much as 600 percent, big jumps recently in sinkhole coverage. Plus, Citizens is turning its back on hundreds of thousands of homeowners and simply throwing them to the wolves lurking at the even more expensive private insurance companies that have suddenly decided to do business in Florida.

What is the reason for all this? To bring actuarial soundness to these state and federal insurance organizations and to make up for huge losses from Hurricane Katrina and other storms.

Just one question: Where does the average working person find the money to cover these new expenses in an age in which salaries have been flat since 2008, working hours are being cut, benefits are being reduced or simply phased out, and the middle class is becoming a thing of the past?

Someone needs to point out to these bureaucrats that there is a limit to what people can afford to pay.

Terry Ward, St. Petersburg

Enough with the utility companies getting raises

It's time for PSC to help consumers

There was an article in the paper this week about how all of the electric companies want to raise our rates again. There was another article about how the standard of living of most Floridians has declined since 2000.

Most working Floridians have not received any pay increases for years. Take teachers, for example. Not only have teachers not been given raises, they have all seen a decline in their take-home pay as a result of having to contribute to the Florida Retirement Service. Retirees living on a fixed income don't need their electricity rates raised either.

When is the last time that the Public Service Commission actually stood up for consumers and not the powerful power companies? Ever? The "Public Service Commission" is an oxymoron (like "Jumbo Shrimp").

Hey, PSC, how about saying "No." It's time to treat the utility companies like state employees or teachers have been treated — "sorry, no raises — deal with it."

You've got enough money to pay huge salaries to your top management and enough left over to pay dividends to shareholders, so there isn't a real need for a rate increase.

And as for Duke Energy, you get nothing until you: (1) pay your delinquent property taxes owed to Citrus County and (2) rebate the money you collected from us for the nuclear plant you and your predecessor never intended to build.

Gary Gibbons, Tampa

Comments
Vology landlord challenges property tax assessment

Vology landlord challenges property tax assessment

LARGO — Eight months after paying $10.15 million for the office building that houses IT services company Vology, a New York company is suing the Pinellas County Property Appraiser and Florida Department of Revenue contending its $5.5 million tax asse...
Updated: 12 minutes ago
Taxpayer subsidies of Tampa golf courses are on the rise as struggles continue

Taxpayer subsidies of Tampa golf courses are on the rise as struggles continue

TAMPA — For the half of the year that Harry Nichols lives in Oldsmar, he plays 18 holes several times a month at Rocky Point Golf Course. On a good day, Nichols said he shoots close to par on the Dana Shores course. And if he’s really lucky, it’ll on...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Florida’s $1.1 billion Hardest Hit Fund winding down after some hard knocks

Florida’s $1.1 billion Hardest Hit Fund winding down after some hard knocks

In 2010, Florida was in the throes of an unprecedented housing crisis. One in every eight homes was in some stage of foreclosure. Today, the foreclosure rate is one in every 83. Because of that enormous drop, Florida’s Hardest Hit Fund will s...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Report: Rich will get still richer unless policies change

Report: Rich will get still richer unless policies change

By ELAINE KURTENBACHTOKYO — Global inequality has stabilized at high levels in recent years, a report said Friday, despite gains among the poor in China and much milder disparities in incomes and wealth in Western Europe. The World Inequality Report ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
How the Disney/Fox deal will shake up Hollywood

How the Disney/Fox deal will shake up Hollywood

Associated Press NEW YORK — After years of tremors, the earthquake that had long been predicted finally shook Hollywood. Disney’s deal to purchase most of 21st Century Fox ends the era of the "Big Six" major movie studios, toppling one ...
Updated: 6 hours ago
St. Petersburg’s Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement set to be complete in 2019

St. Petersburg’s Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement set to be complete in 2019

ST. PETERSBURG — The Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement, under construction since 2015, is scheduled to be complete by the summer of 2019.The five-story, 137,100-square-foot building will house businessman and collector Rudy Ciccarello’s...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Obamacare enrollment ends today, but some can get an extension

Obamacare enrollment ends today, but some can get an extension

Today is the day that open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act will close for most people. But those affected by the slew of hurricanes that pummelled Florida, Texas, Puerto Rico and other states earlier this year can take advantage of a two-week ...
Published: 12/15/17
Pack your bags: 107.3M Americans to set holiday traveling record

Pack your bags: 107.3M Americans to set holiday traveling record

A record-breaking number of Americans are expected to travel this holiday season.The American Automobile Association projects that 107.3 million Americans will pack their bags and travel more than 50 miles by planes, trains, automobiles and other mod...
Published: 12/14/17
Local widowers say baby powder caused their wives’ cancer

Local widowers say baby powder caused their wives’ cancer

Two Tampa area widowers whose wives died of ovarian cancer are suing Johnson & Johnson, joining nearly 5,000 other plaintiffs across the country who blame their illness on the daily use of the pharmaceutical company’s talcum powder.Bryan Isa’s wife, ...
Published: 12/14/17
Jabil’s fiscal results top Wall Street expectations

Jabil’s fiscal results top Wall Street expectations

ST. PETERSBURG — Jabil Circuit Inc. beat Wall Street expectations for both profits and revenue Thursday.The St. Petersburg-based contract electronics manufacturer — one of Tampa Bay’s biggest public companies — posted fiscal first-quarter earnings of...
Published: 12/14/17