ADAM TEBRUGGE, Democrat
FAMILY: Spouse: Regina; two adult children
EDUCATION: B.A., New College of Florida; J.D., Florida State University College of Law
PROFESSIONAL CAREER HIGHLIGHTS: Assistant public defender in Manatee and Sarasota counties for 23 years. Owner/operator Tebrugge Legal since 2009. Adjunct professor at Stetson College of Law. Chairman of the Suncoast Partnership to End Homelessness, 2009-2012. Host and Co-producer of the television program, “Law and Sarasota.”
FUN FACT: I am not accepting PAC money, and I am limiting contributions to $100 per person.
What is your position on Citizens Property Insurance Co.? What role should the state play in insuring private property?
Citizens had helped bring stability to our insurance market, and our consumers will continue to rely upon its protections going forward. The efforts to “depopulate” Citizens have been scandalous, if not criminal, particularly the recent “loan” giveaways.
The ongoing re-inspections are a scam designed to increase rates. The present board of Citizens is doing the will of the Legislature but is not responsive to consumers. The private insurance market has failed the people of this state, and the reinsurance market is all but unregulated.
I agree with this quote: “If the industry would get back to providing insurance with a social value of helping people, instead of looking to squeeze every dollar while reducing their potential losses, I think the economy would grow and ultimately feed them a reasonable return.”
It may be that the state will need to have Citizens write all windstorm policies and have the private market handle all other property coverage.
What is your position on the state of Florida regulating property insurance rate increases and pricing?
State regulation of the property insurance market is absolutely essential. We need better regulation of the reinsurance market and of managing general agents.
Why should the state control property insurance rates when we know that this policy has restricted competition and limited the number of companies willing to sell property insurance here?
I disagree with the premise of this question. We should have better regulation. As reported by the Sarasota Herald-Tribune: “Billions of dollars have been shipped offshore to unregulated financial markets that manipulate Florida’s property insurance crisis for their own gain.”
What is your position on: 1) School choice and school vouchers; 2) Teacher tenure — in K-12 and the college level?
The Florida Constitution guarantees our citizens a high quality public education. I am against the use of taxpayer-funded vouchers to support private schools. At the college and university levels, tenure is an important tool to guarantee academic freedom and research. At the K-12 level, I support job security for our teachers. Multiyear contracts should be available.
What, in your view, is the proper role of state government in public education?
State government should ensure that local school districts are properly funded to accomplish the mission of public education. There should be broad overall goals for capital improvements, teacher retention and student opportunity. The state should not micromanage. I believe that many policy decisions regarding education are best made at the local level.
What is your position on the FCATs?
The FCATs are tools that have unfortunately been abused in recent years. We should not directly tie teacher compensation to FCAT results without taking into account other factors. The many shortcomings of the FCAT were demonstrated this past cycle. Parents, teachers and the Legislature should work together to improve the FCATs and to ensure that students receive a well-rounded education.
What is your position on the state providing corporate welfare to companies that either expand or move to Florida? How and why are these subsidies morally acceptable?
I am dead set against this practice. One of my top priorities will be to expose this welfare to the light of day so that it is ended.
Will you take the Americans for Tax Reform pledge not to increase taxes if you are elected or re-elected? If not, why not?
No. The only pledge I will take is to represent the citizens of Manatee and Sarasota counties to the best of my abilities.
Medicaid costs are increasing at almost double-digit annual rates. How do you think Florida should handle the growth in Medicaid?
We should implement the Affordable Health Care Act. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “Massachusetts’ experience with its health reform efforts offers strong evidence that expanding coverage under a comprehensive health-reform plan can lead to sizable reductions in state costs for uncompensated care.”
By sharply reducing the number of people without health insurance, the Medicaid expansion will reduce state and local costs for hospital care for the uninsured.
What will be your top three priorities if elected?
I will work to reduce governmental corruption and increase transparency. I have been reading the recommendations of Integrity Florida and support most of them. We must increase public access to information by building an online database of all state and local tax incentives. I want to continue to strengthen Florida’s Commission on Ethics. I will work to require better reporting of campaign contributions, particularly to Committees of Continuing Existence.
I will be an advocate for the people and institutions of this area. By this, I mean I will continue to develop my relationships with New College, the University of South Florida, State College of Florida, the Ringling Museum, Mote Marine, our businesses and chambers of commerce, our county commissions and municipal governments, our health-care providers, our law enforcement officers and firefighter and EMTs, our school boards and our citizens. I will be the most accessible and responsive representative this area has ever seen.
I will look for comprehensive solutions to the interlocking problems of property insurance, the foreclosure crisis and homelessness. We cannot tolerate vacant properties in our area when families are homeless. The property-insurance market must be stabilized and made accountable to Florida consumers.
PHOTO GALLERY: YPG Winter Wonderland
The Sarasota Young Professionals Group got in the holiday spirit Thursday, Dec. 12, at its Winter Wonderland after-hours event at Art Center Sarasota. Guests socialized and enjoyed food and drink as well as holiday décor.
WEEKEND BEST BET: Observer Challenge Finals
The 14th Annual Observer Challenge continues Saturday and Sunday at the Longboat Key Public Tennis Center.
WEEKEND BEST BET: Sarasota Boat Parade of Lights
The 28th Annual Sarasota Christmas Boat parade of Lights will make its way across Sarasota Bay Saturday, Dec. 14.
Weekend Best Bet: Cirque Des Voix
This Weekend Best Bet features an evolving collaboration between Sarasota's 100-member vocal chorus Key Chorale and the flexible and exciting circus acts from Circus Sarasota.
13 "Jazz at Two" with the Rodney Rojas Quartet
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
13 Holidays around the Ranch
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
13 Holidays Around the Ranch-Lakewood Ranch
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
13 Cirque Des Voix "Joy and Wonder"
7:00 pm - 5:00 pm
14 FREE Pictures with Santa Cow!
8:00 am - 10:30 am
14 Free Spirograph Art Event For The Kids
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
14 Green Tara Empowerment
14 Gingerbread Houses