County gets low end of BWC rebate

Fulton County will received the lowest county amount of a $15 million statewide rebate from the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.

The county will get $133, the only one of Ohio’s 88 counties receiving less than $4,100. The largest amount, $1.5 million, will go to Hamilton County. Nearly half of all the counties will receive at least $90,000.

The rebates are the product of strong investment returns over the last decade, BWC Administrator/CEO Sarah Morrison said. The amount of each rebate is based on the premiums the counties paid into the fund for policy years 2005 through 2014.

“Thanks to prudent fiscal management and excellent investment returns, we’re pleased to send this money back to county governments,” Morrison said. “While it’s up to the counties how to spend these funds, we encourage them to invest in workplace safety programs to help keep employees safe and contain future costs.”

The rebate comes from the Public Work-Relief Employees’ Fund (PWRE), which provides counties with workers’ compensation coverage for work-relief employees — individuals who must work for a government entity in exchange for public assistance payments. The PWRE provides compensation and medical benefits to individuals injured in the course of their public works employment.

All county governments can expect a rebate by the end of June.

The PWRE fund has grown by more than $10 million over the past 10 years, with more than 80 percent of that growth coming from investment earnings.

The PWRE is one of several specialty funds also managed by BWC, including the Marine Industry Fund, Coal Workers’ Pneumoconiosis Fund, and the Disabled Workers’ Relief Fund.