FWCJUA Operations Committee Meeting Report: August 28

Aug 29, 2008

On Thursday, August 28, 2008, the Florida Workers Compensation Joint Underwriting Association (“FWCJUA”) held an Operations Committee (“Committee”) meeting to discuss the 2009 Business Plan and Forecast, document management and retention, and disaster recovery matters. To view the complete agenda and meeting packet, click here.

Chairman Brett Stiegel called the meeting to order with Committee members Fred Bennett and Rick Hodges in attendance. Also in attendance were Executive Director Laura Torrence, General Counsel Tom Maida, and Laura Lopez from the FWCJUA.

FWCJUA General Counsel gave an update on legislative matters. While there are no legislative matters at this time, the Florida Supreme Court is expected to release a decision on Emma Murray v. Mariner Health/ACE USA soon, which could affect the legislative outlook for 2009. According to FWCJUA General Counsel’s sources, the legislature has not shown any appetite for addressing attorneys’ fees in the 2009 Session, even if the Court’s decision overturns the current system. It is also expected that a recent rate filing by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (“NCCI”) could lead to an average 14.1 percent decrease in the voluntary workers’ compensation market, further dissuading legislative action.

FWCJUA Executive Director gave a report on the 2009 Business Plan and Forecast preliminary outline. Key FWCJUA activities for 2009 will include:

  • Attempted elimination of the Subplan “D” deficit and addressing any future statutory deficits
  • Maintenance of adequate rates
  • Minimization of operating loss
  • Remaining solvent without a policyholder assessment; implementation of an assessment if one becomes necessary
  • Pursuit of sound investments
  • Management of uncollectible premiums within acceptable limits
  • Promotion of loss prevention and safety in the work place of policyholders

Ms. Lopez reviewed the 2009 budgeted expenses. Concern was raised by Chairman Stiegel that the $12 million in premium payments projected for 2009 may have to be re-figured in light of the recent NCCI rate filing. Ms. Lopez said that if the voluntary market were to undergo the expected rate drop based on approval of the NCCI filing, the impact on the FWCJUA is unpredictable. FWCJUA staff will monitor the issue.

The Committee approved the direction FWCJUA staff is taking with regard to the 2009 objectives, key initiatives and activities. FWCJUA staff will present a draft of the 2009 Business Plan and Forecast to the Board of Governors (“Board”) at its September meeting.

Committee members also inquired about “green” initiatives. Ms. Torrence said that although the FWCJUA has no formal “green” policy in place, the agency is moving toward a paperless environment and has enacted other small changes as a measure to reduce its carbon footprint. It was decided that a formal policy will be considered in the future.

Ms. Torrence reviewed the Disaster Recovery and Emergency Preparedness Plan (“Plan”). The Plan has been modified to further clarify the duties of Disaster Recovery Coordinators and the FWCJUA management team, and add disaster preparation and evacuation information for the FWCJUA office. The Committee approved all Plan modifications with no discussion.

Ms. Torrence gave a report on changes to the FWCJUA Records Management and Retention Policy (“Policy”). Changes have been made to provide increased record management flexibility and to streamline the stored records policies and procedures. In addition, changes were made to the minimum term for policy administration service providers to maintain FWCJUA records relating to underwritten policy information and claims files.

The Committee agreed to recommend to the Board that the Policy revisions be adopted. If approved by the Board, the revised FWCJUA Retention Schedule will then be submitted to the Department of State, Division of Library and Information Services.

The Committee then held a closed meeting to consider preliminary results from an internal audit of the FWCJUA’s disaster recovery plan related to its information technology (“IT”) systems. The purpose of the audit is to ensure IT system security, as well as the reliability of its documentation for disaster recovery. Because this portion of the meeting relates to the FWCJUA’s security systems, it was exempt from laws requiring public access or disclosure, and was therefore held in a closed session.

Should you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact Colodny Fass.

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