Workers' Compensation Committee Update
January 20, 2010
The Governor's State Budget Proposal included two provisions specifically related to workers' compensation:
- Requires workers' compensation insurance carriers to remit to the Workers' Compensation Board any New York State Assessment Surcharge funds, as defined by the New York State Compensation Insurance Rating Board, collected from policyholders attributable to State Fiscal Year 2008-09 in excess of amounts billed to the insurance carriers by the Workers' Compensation Board during State Fiscal Year 2008-09. The Division of Budget estimates the amount to be remitted at approximately $24 million to be ultimately swept into the General Fund. (Public Protection & General Government Article VII, Part Q, pages 313-318)
- Extends the authority of the Workers' Compensation Board to borrow from the Uninsured Employers Fund for up to $75 million for purposes of making payments to claimants of defaulted trusts and to offset assessments on remaining self-insured trusts. Language also clarifies the Workers' Comp Board's authority to enforce judgments of former members of an insolvent self-insured trust and to commence collection actions against them. Additionally, the language permits self-insurers or group self-insurers to purchase an insurance product and transfer long term workers' compensation obligations to an authorized workers' compensation carrier. (Public Protection & General Government Article VII, Part R, pages 315-323)
Look for The Business Council's complete state budget overview in this Friday's Government Affairs update.
Governor Paterson nominated Loren Lobban of Buffalo as a member of the Workers' Compensation Board for a term to expire on December 31, 2013. He is nominated to serve the vacancy prompted by the resignation of Zachary Weiss. Mr. Lobban was admitted to the bar in 1976, and has been a private practitioner for over thirty years. Mr. Lobban received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Northern Michigan and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Buffalo. His nomination awaits Senate confirmation.
Additionally, Jeffrey Fenster has been appointed by the Governor to serve as the new Executive Director at the Board. Mr. Fenster's appointment and his new role at the Board were described in further detail in a recent New York Times article.