AP News

Fla. insurer backs off controversial surplus plan


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida's largest insurer is dropping a controversial plan to lend money to private companies that agree to absorb its customers.

Citizens Property Insurance has 1.4 million customers. It has been under pressure to scale back its size in order to reduce its financial risk.

The board of the state-created insurer in September approved a proposal to lend up to $350 million to private insurers who agree to accept policyholders. The program was put on hold to allow outside financial advisers to review it.

Citizens President Barry Gilway announced Thursday that it was unlikely the program could be structured in a way to attract interest while protecting consumers.

Citizens executives did not rule out the plan forever, but they said they want to wait until at least next summer.


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