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Zack Hutchins
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May 20, 2002

Council's workers' compensation trust for manufacturers continues growing steadily

After more than three years of consistent growth, The Business Council's workers' compensation trust for manufacturers shows no sign of slowing.

By May 2002, the trust was reporting some $15 million in annual premiums, with nearly 500 employers as members, said Bob Crandall, The Council's director of member services who oversees the trust.

That growth is expected to continue throughout 2002, and total annual premiums are expected to approach $20 million by year's end, he added.

"Our workers' compensation trust is proving very attractive to The Council's manufacturing members," Crandall said. "Members that join our trust get outstanding comp coverage, very competitive rates, and the benefits of a trust with a consisstently favorable loss experience."

The Business Council's trust is a self-funded plan that is open only to manufacturers that are members of The Business Council. Because it is self-funded, it offers manufacturers both lower initial yearly rates and the potential of future dividends.

For example, two years ago, as a result of favorable loss experience from the trust's beginnings in 1996, the trust offered its first dividend. Manufacturers that were trust members in 1998 received dividends worth 26.5 percent of premiums they paid during that year.

As recently as January of 1999, the trust had a modest standing: 11 members and $448,550 in billed premiums. A year later, 157 Business Council members were billed $3.1 million in premiums. By March of 2001, some 375 members were being billed $10.2 million in annual premiums.

All New York State employers must buy workers' comp for workers. Commercial insurers and the state Insurance Fund offer fully insured plans using the state's manual rates.

Crandall said the trust projects continued growth and will aggressively market its advantages to manufacturers.

"The trust has 500 members, and there are about 17,000 manufacturers in the state," Crandall noted. "Certainly many, many more manufacturers can enjoy the benefits of membership in The Business Council and participation in its workers' comp trust."

The trust is administered by First Cardinal Corporation, which administers 12 such trusts and is New York's largest trust administrator.