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BWC Offers Safety Training Events, August 12 & 15

August 9, 2019

The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) and its Division of Safety and Hygiene will hold a Safe + Sound event at its Pickerington training facility (Fairfield County) on Aug. 12, as well as at The Ohio State University South Centers (Pike County) near Piketon on Aug. 15. Both events run from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This training is for any employer that wants to learn more about safety program requirements.

Topics covered will include safety program management; OSHA recordkeeping; emergency preparedness; personal protective equipment; accident analysis; and hazard communication. The event will provide Industry Specific Safety Program (ISSP) credit and credit for Safety Council participation. 8/8/2016

BWC Taking Applications for Safety Innovation Awards

August 9, 2019

The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) is taking applications from Ohio employers for its annual Safety Innovation Awards, which recognize employers for innovative and creative solutions to reduce the risk of injuries and illnesses in the workplace. Applications are due Sept. 30, 2019. Innovations can include advanced technologies, creative use of existing equipment, or unique processes and practices. Cash awards range from $6,000 for first place to $1,500 for honorable mention. Here is more information. 8/5/2019

Responding to an Active Violence Situation in the Workplace

August 9, 2019

It has been a tough week in Ohio and the rest of the nation following the acts of evil in Dayton and El Paso. If you would like to help the families impacted by this tragedy, consider donating to The Dayton Foundation.

While no employer wants to think about such acts of violence occurring at the workplace, preparing employees can save lives through increased awareness, emergency action plans, and trained response protocols. Last fall, the OMA — in partnership with its safety consultant, Safex — hosted a webinar featuring Lt. Paul Ohl, SWAT platoon commander with the Columbus Division of Police, who discussed effective planning considerations for an active violence situation in the workplace. This recorded webinar is available now, free to all OMA members. 8/5/2019

True-Up Report Deadline is August 15

August 9, 2019

Time is almost up for Ohio’s private employers to complete their payroll “true-up” report. Be sure to complete this action by Thursday, Aug. 15. It is an important and necessary step that allows the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) to accurately calculate premiums. It’s also critical to maintaining your policy and participation in current rating plans or discount programs. If you have questions, contact Brian Jackson, managing director of OMA’s Workers’ Compensation Services. 8/8/2019

Only Two Weeks Left to File Your ‘True-Up’ Report

August 2, 2019

Private employers in Ohio have until Thursday, Aug. 15 to complete their payroll “true-up” report. This is an important and necessary step that allows the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) to accurately calculate premiums. It’s also critical to maintaining your policy and participation in current rating plans or discount programs.

If you have questions, contact Brian Jackson, managing director of OMA’s Workers’ Compensation Services — the only workers’ compensation service provider exclusively serving Ohio’s manufacturers. If you’re not already using the OMA for your workers’ compensation needs, you can easily request a service proposal here. 7/9/2019

Workers’ Comp Rates Drop 20% on Average

August 2, 2019

The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) reports that a 20% reduction in the average premium rate collected from private employers went into effect July 1. This is the BWC’s largest rate reduction in nearly 60 years, and is estimated to save private employers $244 million in FY 2020. The rate relief is attributed to safer workplaces, as well as the continued lower inflation of medical costs. 7/31/2019

July 31 Brings Safety-Related Deadlines for Employers

July 26, 2019

The end of this month brings safety-related deadlines for Ohio employers. According to OMA Connections Partner Health Management Solutions (HMS), July 31 deadlines include:

See HMS’ newsletter for more. 7/22/2019

General Assembly Passes a ‘Clean’ BWC Budget; PTSD Language is Removed

July 19, 2019

This week, the House and Senate finalized House Bill 80, the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) budget. Last month, the General Assembly failed to pass the bill and instead approved a short-term funding solution, while the two chambers continued to negotiate on key differences.

Approved in early June, the House version of HB 80 was loaded with major policy changes that would have had detrimental impacts on the manufacturing community — including provisions to allow expanded PTSD coverage and benefits; changes to the settlement process; and new employee misclassification definitions.

The Senate eliminated the harmful House provisions in their version of HB 80. In the conference committee, the House and Senate agreed to the Senate version, while an amendment to include PTSD was defeated. The OMA worked to remove the harmful provisions to protect Ohio manufacturing. 7/17/2019

Deadline Approaching for Workers’ Comp ‘True-Up’

July 12, 2019

Private employers in Ohio have until Aug. 15 to complete their “true-up” reports, an important and necessary step that allows the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) to accurately calculate premiums.

The true-up process, which is simple to do at BWC’s “My Policy” page, requires employers to report their actual payroll for the previous policy year to reconcile any differences in premium paid. This action is critical to maintaining your policy and participation in current rating plans or discount programs. Employers must complete the true-up report even if their payroll for the year matches the estimate received from BWC.

If you have questions, contact Brian Jackson, managing director of OMA’s Workers’ Compensation Services — the only workers’ compensation service provider exclusively serving Ohio’s manufacturers. If you’re not already using the OMA for your workers’ comp. needs, you can easily request a service proposal here. 7/9/2019

PTSD Remains a Sticking Point in Delayed BWC Budget

July 2, 2019

The legislature failed to meet Sunday’s deadline for passing a final budget measure (House Bill 80) for the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC). As a result, lawmakers extended the BWC’s current funding for 30 days, after the House voted to not concur with the Senate amendments to the budget legislation.

The Senate-passed version of HB 80 contained none of the controversial provisions included by the House, such as employee misclassification language, expanded workers’ comp coverage for PTSD for first responders without a qualifying physical injury, and settlement provisions that would be harmful to manufacturers. House leadership has insisted on keeping the PTSD and misclassification provisions in the bill.

OMA members should contact their state senator and state representative — urging him/her to accept the Senate version of HB 80. Including the controversial PTSD language in the bill would create a fundamental shift in Ohio’s workers’ compensation law, which currently requires a physical injury before allowing any mental health claims. Most troubling, it would establish a precedent for future PTSD expansion to include private employers. If this happened, workers’ compensation premiums for Ohio manufacturers would increase dramatically. 7/1/2019