Published: Jul 13, 2011 4:48 PM EDT
Updated: Jul 13, 2011 3:48 PM EDT

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The CEO of the state-backed Citizens Property Insurance Corp. wants to look at the possibility of privatizing the state's largest insurer of business and homes.

Jim Malone told members of the insurers' Board of Directors during a Wednesday conference call that going private might be the best answer for everyone.

And he might also have legislative support on the idea.

Senate Banking and Insurance Committee chair Garrett Richter of Naples says he agrees with Malone's idea that Citizens would be a good target for a private entity because of its existing book of business. It would also remove a giant liability from the state.

Citizens, which insures roughly 1.4 million Florida home and business owners, is adding customers at a rate of between 5,000 and 7,000 a week.

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