Workers’ Compensation, Proposition 65, Log 200, etc., August 2001

What’s Up 40%?

You think it’s your energy bills, wish it was your sales, but actually, it is your workers’ compensation insurance!  Last year workers’ compensation premiums increased about 40% and this year it is expected to be up 30%.  California amended its workers’ compensation law in 1995 to provide a more competitive field for insurance companies, thereby reducing the premiums for employers.  In 1995, the law that required employers to pay workers’ compensation insurance was modified to an open rating system from a rate fixed by the state.  The 1995 regulations sparked a price war amongst insurance companies much to the delight of employers. However, the premiums that went down about 50% in the year following the deregulation are up about 8% from the pre-deregulation days.

Insurance companies have reportedly increased the premiums to cover up their losses.  Last year they lost about $3 billion in California alone.  To make matters worse, some of them went belly-up or left the business in the state to minimize their exposure. For example, the second largest writer of workers’ compensation insurance in California, Fremont General Corp., is now under voluntary state supervision for its poor financial condition.  Another reason was that when the stock market headed south, many insurance companies that had their fortunes tied up in the market got pummeled.

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Tires, Money, Rules, etc., April 2001

Tires – Keep on Trucking

Late last year, the California legislature made significant changes to the California Tire Fee and used tire management programs.  These issues were dealt in detail in our November 2000 newsletter.  As part of the law enacted in late 2000, the regulating agency, California Integrated Waste Management Board (CIWMB) has developed new forms for dealers to report used tires generated at their facility.

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Hazmat Manifest, Forklift Training, Injuries and Fatalities Reports, etc., July 2000

Bye-Bye Manifest

California hazardous waste disposal documentation laws have been simplified.  Now disposal of waste antifreeze, oil/water separator sludge (500 gallon per 30-day period) and parts cleaning solvent (both petroleum-based and water-based) do not require the completion of a manifest.  The manifest is a six-page, multi-colored State of California document that needed to be completed for disposal of any hazardous waste unless exempted.

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