According to a Gulf Coast Claims Center press release, the closing is due to the fact that the “Gulf Breeze office does not receive the high traffic volume experienced by many of the other facilities.”
The GCCF also said they will continue to monitor all sites and make adjustments, whether increasing or decreasing staff, and claims evaluations are continuing uninterrupted.
The press release said claimants in this area could go to other offices for assistance.
“In addition, in making the decision to close the Gulf Breeze office, the GCCF made certain that claimants who frequent the Gulf Breeze office could easily be directed to one of two nearby claims facilities located within 20 miles of Gulf Breeze,” according to the press release.
Representative Doug Broxson said he thinks the closure is disturbing.
“Of the 35 centers in the five Gulf Coast states, the Santa Rosa claims center is the only one closing. If this was a simple business decision based on low volume of activity you could have a small level of understanding. Unfortunately, the decision appears to have been made on arrogance,” said Broxson. “The Santa Rosa office is in the top 30 percent in productivity, working with over 75 claimants each day. In comparison, the two claims offices in the [Florida] Keys see less than 10 claimants a day.”
Broxson also said Ken Feinberg, head of the GCCF, has been asked to give a valid reason for this closing, but he has not responded.
“We have requested Ken Feinberg of the Gulf Coast Claims Facility to give us a valid reason for closing, to date he has not responded. In a meeting with Mr. Feinberg on February 18, we had a heated discussion on the deficiencies of his claims program and he promised to punish me for my consistent criticism of his efforts,” said Broxson. “Without any further explanation from him I can only conclude he has lived up to one of the hundreds of promises he has made in the last 10 months.”
Broxson is also concerned about what this means for citizens in the county because this closure means more time and auto expenses will have to be spent to continue any claims processes.
He also said this does strengthen his commitment that deserving claimants get paid.