PCI Applauds W. Va. Gov.’s Focus on Workers’ Comp Reform

November 14, 2005

The Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) has applauded West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin for calling a special session of the State Legislature in order to finalize any remaining details of the state’s new workers’ compensation program.

The program’s transition from a public program to a privately run company, approved earlier this year by the Legislature, is scheduled to take effect Jan. 1, 2006.

“PCI applauds Gov. Manchin for his continued dedication and focus on finalizing the upcoming workers compensation program,” said Angela Zaydon,” regional manager for PCI. “With the program’s start date looming around the corner, there is not much time to spare. We urge state lawmakers and the Legislature to act quickly and pass legislation making the necessary modifications.”

In January, state legislators passed legislation now referred to as the Workers’ Compensation Debt Reduction Act. Included in the act is the specific provision to privatize workers’ comp and create an employer-owned, private mutual insurance company regulated by the State Insurance Commission. That company, BrickStreet Insurance, officially takes control of the system Jan. 1, 2006. The market will open up to other state insurance carriers in July 2008.

“We look forward to getting this new program up and running so that West Virginia insurance consumers can benefit from potentially lower premiums and a greater selection of providers when the system opens up to market competition in 2008,” added Zaydon.

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