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Regulators set public hearing for Citizens Property Insurance proposed rate hikes

Policyholders with state-run Citizens Property Insurance facing a double-digit rate hike, or worse, will have a chance to voice their concerns at a public hearing in Miami two weeks from now.

Citizens, by far Florida's largest property insurer with more than 1.4 million policies, has proposed a 12 percent average statewide increase in its personal lines accounts and an 11.1 percent increase in its coastal accounts, formerly referred to as its high-risk accounts.

The averages do not reflect the changes in any given policy, which may rise substantially or be cut depending on circumstances.

Separately, Citizens is proposing widespread changes in its sinkhole coverage rates, ranging from a decrease of 35.1 percent in non-coastal areas of Palm Beach to an increase of 111.9 percent in Marion County. In the Tampa Bay region, considered a major source of sinkhole claims, Hernando, Hillsborough and Pasco counties face a potential 50 percent increase.

Florida insurance regulators set the hearing for 4 to 8 p.m. Sept. 20 on Miami-Dade College's Wolfson Campus, 300 NE Second Ave. The meeting will be in Room 3210 of the Chapman Center.

Consumers and others are also urged to submit comments to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation by sending an email to: Include "Citizens" in the subject line of the email.