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FGCU launches free workshops to foster equity, retain workers; Supreme Court throws out race claim in SC redistricting case in win for GOP; as millions hit the roads, MI lawmakers consider extra driving fees; CT groups prepare for World Fish Migration Day.

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U.S. Supreme Court allows South Carolina gerrymander that dilutes Black voters, Sen. Ted Cruz refuses to say if he'll accept 2024 election results, and Trump calls Mar-a-Lago search an attempt to have him assassinated.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Bill on Governor’s Desk to Raise Minimum Car Insurance Coverage

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Wednesday, August 24, 2022   

Consumer advocates are urging Gov. Gavin Newsom to sign a bill now on his desk that would raise the amount auto insurance companies must cover in the event of a crash.

The "Protect California Drivers Act" would raise the mandatory minimum amount of liability insurance to $30,000 for a single injury or death, $60,000 if more than one person is injured or killed, and $15,000 to cover property damage.

Craig Peters, president of Consumer Attorneys of California, said the bill would double the current rates, which only require coverage of $15,000, $30,000 and $5,000 respectively.

"Fifteen-thousand today will barely cover the cost of an ambulance ride to the hospital," he said, "and $5,000 will barely fix a minor dent in a car."

He noted that when the current rates were set, back in 1967, they were intended to cover the cost of a two-week hospital stay or the replacement of the vehicle. Since every California driver is required to have insurance that meets state standards, the law would protect victims of car crashes from incurring massive debt.

The bill's few opponents, including some insurers, said it's the wrong time to be raising the cost of coverage. However, Peters said the bill was the result of negotiations between consumer groups and insurance industry representatives, and called the changes long overdue.

"California has lagged behind every other state in the union," he said. "This will actually put us back into the middle of the pack."

Senate Bill 1107 already has passed both houses of the California Legislature. If it becomes law, the new limits would take effect in 2025. They'd also increase ten years later - to $50,000 or $100,000 for injuries or deaths, and $25,000 for property damage.


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