Washington regulators propose no rate change thanks in part to reforms
The latest estimate is for savings of $1.5 billion over four years -- $300 million more than anticipated.
"Had the governor and the legislature not adopted the 2011 reforms, I wouldn't be making this proposal today," said Judy Schurke, director of the Department of Labor and Industries. "In fact, without those reforms, we would be facing a rate increase."
Schurke said the reforms are not the only reason that L&I is proposing to keep rates stable for the second year in a row. She also cited:
- Fewer claims in high-hazard industries such as construction.
- Frequency has decreased by 6.2 percent.
- Medical cost growth has been kept below 4 percent over the past five quarters and is expected to do so in 2013.
- Claims are being resolved more quickly.
The proposal would mean an additional $82 million going into the State Fund reserves by the end of 2013. The state auditor had warned about the consequences of continuing inadequate reserves.
L&I has scheduled public hearings and said a final decision would be made in early December for rates as of Jan. 1.
Read more at the WorkersComp Forum homepage.
October 18, 2012
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