Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

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Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

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Article excerpt

STATE GIVES STORM VICTIMS GRACE PERIOD FOR RENEWALS

The Florida Cabinet approved a measure that will give victims of Hurricane Charley a grace period for handling homeowners insurance renewals and premium payments while recovering from the disaster.

"In the aftermath of Hurricane Charley, storm victims are busy putting their lives back together," Tom Gallagher, the state's chief financial officer said in a statement. "The last thing they should have to worry about is making premium payments or losing coverage."

The measure forces insurers to provide a 60-day grace period on premium payments and non-renewals for homeowners insurance for residents in 12 Florida counties affected by the hurricane. Kevin McCarty, commissioner of insurance regulation, said the state has not received any complaints but wanted to take a "proactive step" to protect consumers.

Sarah Skidmore/The Times-Union

ADA RANKS FCCJ DENTAL PROGRAM IN THE TOP 20%

The American Dental Association ranked the dental hygiene program at Florida Community College at Jacksonville among the top 20 percent of like programs nationwide. This ranking is a significant improvement from the college's ranking in the bottom 20 percent of programs in 2003.

Michael Corby, spokesman for the community college, said improved performance on professional exams as result of school program changes led to the vast change in ranking. In 2004, FCCJ students' scores resulted in the school being ranked 40th among 243 institutions based on average score.

"We're very proud of our students' performance on the national exams," Barbara Darby, FCCJ north campus president said. "As well as being one of the fastest-growing occupations nationally and locally, dental hygienists make excellent wages. . . . As a career choice, it's a wonderful combination of positives."

Sarah Skidmore/The Times-Union

TRUCKING INDUSTRY CARRIED LESS IN JULY, INDEX SHOWS

The American Trucking Associations' advanced seasonally adjusted Truck Tonnage Index fell 0.3 percent in July, the national trucking industry group reported. This followed a revised 0.8 percent increase in June. The index has declined in two of the last three months. …

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