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Wednesday
Nov222006

OSHA Proposes $328,000 in Penalties for 2 FL Contractors

OSHA proposes over $328,000 in penalties for two Florida contractors after triple fatality at Miami Beach jobsite. OSHA has cited two Florida construction companies following the investigation of a roof collapse in which three workers were killed. The fatal accident occurred May 6, at One Bal Harbour on Collins Avenue, Miami Beach. Proposed penalties total $297,500 for Southland Forming and $30,525 for the general contractor Boran Craig Barber Engel Construction. Three Southland employees died when formwork and poured concrete for the roof level of a condominium building collapsed, trapping them on the level below. A fourth worker was hospitalized with serious injuries. OSHA issued four willful citations to Southland for failing to design and erect formwork that would adequately support the weight of concrete being placed upon it; failure to properly position and ensure stability of shoring posts; and failure to conduct inspections during the concrete pour.

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Saturday
Nov112006

Onsite Triage Savings are no Accident

Innovative ways to lower workers’ compensation costs with strategic sourcing. There’s a clear need for keeping workers’ compensation costs down, but simply reducing benefits is not a practical answer. Human resources, safety and risk managers in the convenience store industry need to consider innovative approaches to improving employee health and safety while containing workers’ compensation costs for the employer. The industry needs healthy employees in order to be productive, and people without effective health care cost employers and society more in the long run. One viable option is “strategic sourcing.” Workplace health care is a strong candidate for outsourcing because of rapidly rising costs, an increasingly complex regulatory environment and the growing need for sophisticated clinical and technical capabilities. Companies partner with providers of specialized occupational healthcare services because of their specific expertise, experience and results in delivering health care onsite and online in the workplace. Innovative, new approaches to containing workers’ compensation costs are emerging from outsourced partners.

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Monday
Nov062006

PEOs cover ABCs of Human Resources

Companies take care of hiring, payroll and benefits for many small businesses, the administrative burdens of hiring, managing and paying employees can be overwhelming. As a result, many business owners are turning to alternative methods of hiring staff, including something called the “professional employer organization” or “PEO”. PEOs are companies that help businesses find and hire people, plus manage such things as health benefits, workers’ compensation claims, payroll, unemployment insurance and more. As a business owner, you contract with a PEO to assume these and other responsibilities, allowing you to concentrate on the revenue-producing side of your operations. PEOs establish and maintain an employer relationship with the workers assigned to you and assume many employer responsibilities and risks. Most small businesses are new to the “human resources” or “HR” field. One advantage of using a professional employer organization is that they already have experienced HR pros who can handle benefits, payroll, Occupational Safety and Health Administration compliance and just about everything else you will need. By bringing employees into a larger overall group, a PEO can offer your workers benefits, such as health insurance and retirement plans, that you would be hard-pressed to deliver on your own.

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Tuesday
Oct312006

FL Workers Comp Rates to Drop 15.7%

Florida’s insurance commissioner got what he wanted: Workers’ compensation insurance rates are to fall by a statewide average of 15.7 percent, effective Jan. 1. Commissioner Kevin McCarty approved an amended rate filing submitted by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI). His office estimated the overall average rate decrease of 15.7 percent will produce a savings worth more than $400 million for Florida employers. Earlier this month, McCarty asked NCCI to amend its original filing, citing disagreements with the methodology NCCI used to project losses and with the trend factors used in the filing.

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Friday
Oct272006

Is It Time to Outsource Your HR?

When the time comes to start hiring staff, a lot of entrepreneurs fail to give much thought to all the responsibilities that come with being an employer. The average small-business owner isn’t equipped with either the knowledge or the time to comply with the mountain of regulations required by the government. Fortunately, HR outsourcing—hiring a PEO to oversee your HR tasks—is a solution that not only provides help with compliance issues but can also provide assistance that’s tailored to your company’s specific needs. A PEO, or Professional Employer Organization, can offer HR solutions tailored to small and midsized businesses in all industries. For an annual fee, usually 2 to 7 percent of the dollar value of your annual payroll, a PEO will take care of everything from recruiting and hiring to managing your health benefits. Since many smaller businesses can’t afford to hire an HR professional, PEOs can be a cost-conscious option. For instance, if a company has a $1 million payroll, a PEO can provide the equivalent of a full HR department for roughly $20,000 to $70,000 a year, considerably less than a fully staffed HR department or even one qualified executive.

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