Governor John Baldacci and the Executive Director of Maine Workers’ Compensation Board, Paul R. Dionne, announced that the Workers’ Compensation Board recently approved the largest reduction in the assessment to employers since 1993.
The action reduced the assessment which funds the Agency from $10.8 million to $7.35 million for a total reduction of $3.45 million. This was accomplished through the following measures: a transfer from the Rehabilitation Fund of more than $1.1 million; salary savings from vacancies and shutdown days of $675,000; audits from prior fiscal years of $1.6 million; and miscellaneous savings of $60,000. The Board approved the recommendation by a vote of 5-0.
This is the second year in a row that the Workers’ Compensation Board has submitted record breaking reductions. Last year the Workers’ Compensation Board announced a $3 million reduction.
“A key goal of my Administration during these challenging economic times has been to reduce the costs and burdens on Maine businesses,” said Governor Baldacci. “Working with the Maine Workers’ Compensation Board and the Maine Legislature, we have been successful in keeping more valuable resources in the hands of businesses by reducing the workers’ compensation assessment to employers of the State. This serves as a stimulus package to the Maine economy.”
“The reduction in workers’ compensation assessment of is a direct benefit to employers of the State, and should have a powerful effect on the Maine economy,” said Maine Workers’ Compensation Board Executive Director Dionne. “Overall, compensation rates have dropped 54 percent since 1993. These decreases have contributed to one of the more stable workers’ compensation systems in the country.”