The argument against a cap on workers compensation benefits | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, March 9, 2017

The argument against a cap on workers compensation benefits

Posted By on Thu, Mar 9, 2017 at 12:34 PM

click to enlarge THOUGHTS ON WORKERS COMP: Eddie Walker Jr.
  • THOUGHTS ON WORKERS COMP: Eddie Walker Jr.
The House has already passed HB 1586 to cap workers compensation benefits at 450 weeks.

The bill is sponsored by the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce. It's a moneymaker for business. They already enjoy some of the lowest workers comp rates in the country, but capping benefits would be a further windfall by shifting any continuing financial help to permanently disabled workers to  the federal government.

The bill awaits action in the Senate.

Eddie Walker Jr., a Fort Smith lawyer, former president of the Arkansas Bar Association, and former workers comp administrative law judge, has written a comprehensive letter that details the shortcomings of the bill and endeavors to correct the business lobby's talking points. Among them is the lobby's claim that a disability fund for death and total disability is closing and requires the change,. Walker says that closing won't happen for a year, while benefits of reduced costs to companies would begin immediately. He says, too, that he can't think of a case in which a permanently disabled worker would be better off drawing Social Security disability than benefits from the workers comp fund. (CORRECTION: The original item incorrectly identified Walker as current president of the Bar Association.)

He thinks the bill is motivated by "corporate greed and misinformation." It  wouldn't be the first time. It's complicated, but his letter is worth reading.


Next stop for this bill is the Senate Public Health committee. Read what Walker has to say and if you agree, here are some senators to call.
Chair Senator Senator Cecile Bledsoe
Vice-Chair Senator Eddie Cheatham
Senator John Cooper
Senator Lance Eads
Senator Scott Flippo
Senator Stephanie Flowers
Senator Missy Irvin
Senator David J. Sanders

Tags: , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • IHOP coming down, but .....

    I always scan the Little Rock City Board for items of interest this week and this one caught my eye: A zoning measure required by a proposal to tear down the IHOP at Markham and University.
    • Apr 30, 2016
  • Antwan Phillips wants to make a difference in reducing Little Rock violence

    KARK/Fox 16's push to do something about Little Rock violence includes a spotlight on people trying to make a difference — in this episode Antwan Phillips, a lawyer at Wright, Lindsey and Jennings.
    • Aug 30, 2017
  • LR speakers blast state board for double standard

    A series of speakers, beginning with Sen. Joyce Elliott, denounced what they saw as a hidden agenda favoring charter schools at the state Department of Education and asked the state Board of Education for return of local control.
    • May 12, 2016

Most Shared

  • Conflicts of interest in the legislatures

    The Center for Public Integrity and the Associated Press collaborated for a project aimed at highlighting state legislators whose lawmaking might be affected by private business interests.
  • Industrial hemp pilot program coming soon to Arkansas

    One of the booths at this week's Ark-La-Tex Medical Cannabis Expo was hosted by the Arkansas Hemp Association, a trade group founded to promote and expand non-intoxicating industrial hemp as an agricultural crop in the state. AHA Vice President Jeremy Fisher said the first licenses to grow experimental plots of hemp in the state should be issued by the Arkansas State Plant Board next spring.
  • Cats and dogs

    I've always been leery of people who dislike animals. To my wife and me, a house without dog hair in the corners and a cat perched on the windowsill is as barren as a highway rest stop. We're down to three dogs and two cats, the smallest menagerie we've had for years.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation