Update 4/10/20: On Friday, April 10, the BWC Board of Directors unanimously approved the $1.6 billion dollar employer rebate as recommended by Governor DeWine and BWC Administrator McCloud. At the Board meeting, the Administrator made clear it is the Bureau’s goal to have all checks mailed to employers by the end of April. Additionally, the Bureau’s CFO stated the net position of the state insurance fund after accounting for the rebate is $8.9 billion.
Governor Mike DeWine and BWC Administrator Stephanie McCloud have asked the BWC Board of Directors to approve a $1.6 billion dollar rebate aimed at helping employers across Ohio who may be struggling with cash flow issues resulting from restrictions put in place to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
All state fund workers’ compensation employers are eligible for the rebate that amounts to one hundred percent of an employer’s paid premium for this fiscal year. Additionally, the governor signaled that rebate checks could be in the hands of employers by the end of April.
The decision by the governor and Administrator McCloud to request the issuance of a rebate now instead of this fall when rebates have traditionally been announced will provide much needed relief to Ohio employers who are struggling due to the economic impact of the coronavirus.
Likewise, the BWC Board of Directors was originally scheduled to meet April 24, but will now meet April 10 via video conference to vote on approving the rebate. The decision to issue a rebate or dividend is largely tied to the investment performance of the Bureau’s assets which consist entirely of employer dollars. Thankfully, the BWC Board and BWC investment team have been good stewards of these employer dollars, which enables them to provide employers with a rebate equal to one hundred percent of their paid premiums.
Ohio employers also play a role in the ability of the Bureau to give rebates because employer investments in creating safer workplaces continues to reduce the number of workers’ compensation claims each year.
The commitment by Ohio’s employers to create safer workplaces tied with the sound fiscal management of assets by the BWC has led to lower employer premiums and numerous billion dollar rebates. In fact, over the last nine years, employers have saved more than $10 million in workers’ compensation costs through premium rate reductions, rebates, credits and greater administrative efficiencies.