News

With some public entities planning to retain their remote work policies even after the pandemic, one previously rare working arrangement is being considered more often: public entity employees working from an entirely different state. This situation can generate some unique issues for both public entities and pools — particularly when it comes to workers’ compensation coverage. Most pools offering workers’ compensation coverage do so only in their own state, both as a matter of historical need and because of regulatory or statutory restrictions. Each state also has its own statutory workers’ compensation benefits and requirements, including in some cases ...
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The resources below were featured in the May 27, 2021, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. COVID-19 List of ventilation tips to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in schools (ESD 112 / SWRMIC) Public entity guidance relating to workplace vaccinations from CIRMA , MCIT and NDIRF Access more COVID-19 pooling resources via our website . RISK MANAGEMENT GUIDANCE FOR PUBLIC ENTITIES Steps to enhance employee safety and minimize property losses from wildfires and related emergencies (California JPIA) Podcast series on key legal issues important to member entities and pool-provided services ...
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AGRiP Recognition honors pools adhering to a recommended level of professional standards and industry best practices. Approximately a quarter of AGRiP member pools have achieved AGRiP Recognition.  Whether applying for Recognition or not, all member pools can use the AGRiP Advisory Standards for Recognition to improve their governance, policies and procedures.  We congratulate the 10 member pools granted Recognition in 2021 so far: The Delaware Valley Trusts (DVT) offer comprehensive liability coverages as well as Heart and Lung Act liability coverage for participants with police departments. This year, the Trusts also offer “active shooter ...
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As pools increasingly bring their teams back to the office, they're considering how their experiences with remote work might impact them over the long term. This new article from  2016–17 Resident Futurist Rebecca Ryan includes a terrific diagram highlighting the importance of  mission clarity and appropriate structure  with respect to your return-to-work plans. One key thought pertaining to pools: By definition, pools have phenomenal mission clarity — although it’s an area of opportunity for continuous improvement in internal communications. This means you can really  focus on the top half of Rebecca’s diagram to ask which structure is most fitting ...
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The resources below were featured in the April 8, 2021, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. COVID-19 Illinois’s COVID-19 presumption will now apply to certain essential workers only until June 30 , not Dec. 31 (see pages 6, 12–14, 16–17). Virginia has established a new COVID-19 workers’ compensation presumption for health care workers . Article about whether COVID-19 can be classified as an occupational disease (written by Safety National, VP-level QEI Patron) Access more COVID-19 pooling resources via our website . RISK MANAGEMENT GUIDANCE FOR PUBLIC ENTITIES Guidance on preparing ...
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The resources below were featured in the March 18, 2021, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. COVID-19 List of COVID-19 employee leave considerations (VLCT) Article about work comp coverage for employees suffering an adverse vaccine reaction (PRISM) Webinar on issues related to COVID-19 vaccination programs in the workplace (California JPIA) Perspective on the COVID-19 environment and its effects on the workers’ compensation industry (Sedgwick, Legacy-level QEI Patron) Blog post on the lingering cognitive effects of COVID-19 (Sedgwick, Legacy-level QEI Patron) Access more COVID-19 ...
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Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court held that  a person may be considered “seized” under the Fourth Amendment   even if the individual escapes . This case may be of interest to pools covering law enforcement risks. Writing for the majority in  Torres v. Madrid , Chief Justice John Roberts said the “application of physical force to the body of a person with intent to restrain is a seizure, even if the force does not succeed in subduing the person.” Because this ruling expands what constitutes a Fourth Amendment seizure, it may open up police departments to additional police liability exposures — especially when suspects are injured trying to flee ...
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Before the pandemic, it was hard for pool governing body members to carve out time for training. Layer on pandemic-related travel restrictions and other hurdles, and it’s even more difficult for them to find space on their schedules for governance education — no matter how valuable or necessary it is. Pools are facing serious challenges: COVID-19, societal shifts, a hard reinsurance market and more. Many pools are also experiencing higher-than-usual turnover on their governing bodies, so there’s increased demand for onboarding education.  No matter how you manage it, introductory training for a governing body member should include at a minimum: ...
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A few weeks ago, we distributed our Succession Readiness Assessment to pool executives.  This survey — the first engagement of the year in our ongoing residency — was designed to help each top pool executive self-assess their pool’s readiness for their own planned or unplanned departures. Respondents were asked to (a) tell us about their existing succession plans, (b) share their expectations for the future, and (c) report on their staff team’s preparedness to take on executive duties across core pool functions. The responses we’ve gotten so far have shed valuable light on pools’ readiness for executive succession. Here are some selected ...
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In 2019 and early in 2020, a number of states passed or considered legislation to create workers’ compensation presumptions for PTSD in first responders. When COVID-19 hit, legislative focus shifted and things quieted a bit on presumptions.  Today, the issue of presumptions is again gaining momentum. Although we’re hearing continued talk about presumptions for PTSD for public safety workers, focus now seems to be mostly about legislation expanding cancer presumptions for firefighters.   Naturally, pools are seeking to evaluate the effects of new presumptions on workers’ compensation claims. Projections might be used as the basis to quantify potential ...
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The resources below were featured in the Feb. 25, 2021, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. COVID-19 Vermont’s newly extended  workers’ compensation presumption  for front-line workers, now lasting until the 30th day following the eventual termination of the COVID-related state of emergency Highlights from a  recent pool-facilitated discussion on COVID-19’s impact on liability  (WCRP) Overview of  COVID-19 liability waivers shared by SDRMA with member public entities RISK MANAGEMENT FOR PUBLIC ENTITIES Tips to  prevent pipes from freezing (LARM) Best practices for  snow emergencies ...
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Late last year, we brought together pool leaders for Executive Think Tank, an event in which participants used collaborative conversation methods to discuss important pooling issues in 2021 and beyond. After the event, we were surprised by how frequently participants inquired about how we developed the conversation methodologies. Executives told us the conversation prompts, supportive technology and facilitation methods were instrumental in producing useful outcomes they could bring back to their pools. Because of this feedback, our Executive Think Tank Report presents not just the insights that came out of conversations but also the methodologies ...
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The resources below were featured in the Feb. 4, 2021, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. PRESUMPTIONS New   PTSD presumption in Ohio   for first responders with a corresponding special compensation fund administered by the state   RISK MANAGEMENT Encouragement to   embrace winter walks for better health   (MIIA) Warning signs and removal tips for   excessive snow loads on roofs   (TOIRMA) Winter risk checklist for equipment and drivers   (TOIRMA) Recommended safety practices for   confined spaces where there may be dangerous gas   (LARM)   MEMBER-ORIENTED COMMUNICATIONS AND SERVICES ...
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The full report from AGRiP’s Executive Think Tank is now available online. In this collaborative event held last December, pool executives explored timely industry issues through a series of facilitated discussion sessions. Topics included (1) the future of pandemics, (2) changes to pool culture, (3) emerging leadership competencies, (4) accelerating digital transformation, (5) new pool operating models, (6) building a resilient pool and (7) member engagement. Download this easily navigable post-event report to: Read overall takeaways relating to pool business risks, member engagement, and leadership and culture Learn what pool executives ...
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Special Districts Insurance Services (SDIS) has developed an innovative employee assistance program (EAP) for emergency responders, earning the pool an Award for Excellence in Performance from the Association of Governmental Risk Pools (AGRiP).  Since Jan. 2019, Public Safety EAP has provided confidential counseling, a wellness resource center, professional and personal coaching services, and other benefits to firefighters and EMS workers free of charge. The program has directly reduced health and other risks for Oregon’s public safety responders, who often work in challenging situations with physical and emotional demands.  Notably, ...
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Pools and their members have spent the last year conducting most, if not all, of their operations virtually. As we look ahead, I imagine every pool is looking forward to the return of in-person interaction.  However, as much as we might wish otherwise, our pre-pandemic professional world is never completely coming back. Pools and public entities will be living with the effects of the COVID-accelerated virtual revolution from here on out. With that in mind, I’ve been reading a lot lately about hybrid meetings: meetings that blend in-person and virtual participation in a way that creates comparable experiences for all participants. I’m writing ...
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The resources below were featured in the Jan. 14, 2021, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. COVID-19 FAQs about   COVID-19 and workers’ compensation   (MCIT) Access more COVID-19 pooling resources   via our website .   RISK MANAGEMENT Poster with tips for   addressing snowplow driver fatigue   (CIRSA) Safe work practices for   avoiding slips and falls on snow and ice   (KLCIS) Warning signs of impending workplace violence   and   tips for keeping workers safe   (OMAG) Tips for   reducing dangerous inflow and infiltration in municipal wastewater systems   (OMAG)   MEMBER ...
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With almost all pools having experienced some form of operational disruption this year, pool leaders are looking ahead to what their business processes might look like in 2021 and beyond. For many pools, this will involve using technology to automate functions historically performed by hand. In fact, as part of a poll conducted during one of the conference sessions at Pooling Today, three-quarters of pool respondents said 40 percent or more of their pool’s business processes could be automated.  With this in mind, a group of pool executives participating in our Executive Think Tank recently identified a variety of opportunities for pool business ...
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The resources below were featured in the Nov. 11, 2020, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. COVID-19 Pool communication to member entities on   core coverage changes resulting from the pandemic   (MCIT) Explanation of   updated employee hazard regulations in California   (GSRMA)   Access more COVID-19 pooling resources   via our website . RISK MANAGEMENT Procedures for   avoiding workplace fires   (OMAG) Precautions for   keeping firefighters safe from chemical exposure   (OMAG) Article on the   importance of safety at roadside worksites   (CSD Pool) Best practice recommendations ...
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The resources below were featured in the Nov. 12, 2020, issue of AGRiP eNews and may be of interest to pools. RISK MANAGEMENT Strategies for   easing the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder among employees   (MIIA) Advice on   general winter weather property preparedness   and   preventing roof collapses due to snow   (County Mutual newsletter) Tips to   avoid electronic funds transfer fraud attacks   (ASCIP)   LIABILITY Advice to school districts about   assessing and setting liability limits   (CSD Pool)   WORKERS’ COMPENSATION Article on   uncertainty surrounding cancer, COVID-19, PTSD and ...
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