Keeping Illinois Jobs: Reforming Workers Comp

Rep. Dwight Kay on Worker Comp

On Wednesday, April 17 the House State Government Administration Committee held a subject matter hearing on the privatization of the taxpayer funded Illinois workers’ compensation system.  The privatization of the workers’ compensation system is a result of the fraud and abuse of the workers’ compensation system previously administered by the Department of Central Management Services (CMS).

Participating in Wednesday’s hearing for the House Republicans was Representative Dwight Kay (Glen Carbon).  Rep. Kay serves as the point man on workers’ compensation reform for Illinois House Minority Leader Tom Cross and currently serves on the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Advisory Board.

In 2011, an audit sponsored by Rep. Kay, requested an investigation into the state’s workers’ compensation system after reports of abuse at Menard Correctional Center came to light.  Over a four year period, Illinois paid out $295 million in workers compensation claims.  Of that $295 million, almost $96 million, or one-third, was for claims filed by Corrections employees.  And of that $96 million, over $30 million were from claims from Menard employees.

As a result of Rep. Kay’s audit, the Illinois legislature approved the privatization of the taxpayer funded workers’ compensation system.  Offering testimony in committee was both CMS and TRISTAR risk management.  TRISTAR will serve as the first third party administrator of the state workers’ compensation system and was awarded a five year contract to administer the State’s workers’ compensation system.  The contract will include workplace safety training, and place the current
19,000 claims in electronic format in order to improve administering the workers’ compensation system.  Effective July 1, 2013, TRISTAR will be administering all workers’ compensation claims made by state employees.

More info on Rep. Kay's efforts to reform workers' comp in Illinois: