Floridians distrust insurers, utilities

March 6, 2006 at 8:58 PM

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., March 6 (UPI) -- A poll of hurricane-battered Florida voters finds widespread distrust of insurance companies and public utilities.

More than half of those surveyed in a poll for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel said state regulation should be stronger.

"I think the public understands very clearly there is no accountability," said state Sen. Ron Klein, a Democrat who is running for Congress. "The result is very high rates and the lack of availability of multiple insurance companies. With the hurricanes, the insurance market has gotten worse and people want someone who they believe is responsive to their needs."

Almost half of those polled, 47 percent, believe the appointed insurance commissioner is not doing an adequate job, and 51 percent say the position should be elected. While 52 percent said they did not think the Public Service Commission is doing enough to monitor utilities, respondents were split on whether commissioners should be elected, with 38 percent saying yes, 36 percent no and the rest undecided.

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