Critical Operating Cost
“Workers’ compensation insurance is a critical operating cost for business owners and the 13.8 percent rate decrease approval will allow employers to better support Florida’s families, visitors and labor force.”
— Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier said a recently approved workers’ comp rate decrease will save employers approximately $454 million. It is the third decrease since two Florida Supreme Court decisions in 2016 led to a 14.5 percent increase and caused panic over the state’s workers’ comp system.
“While we have great sympathy for the plaintiffs, we are confident that our glyphosate-based herbicides were not the cause of their injuries and we will vigorously defend them at trial.”
— Bayer AG’s Monsanto is defending itself against a California couple suffering from cancer who sued the company, alleging its glyphosate-containing weed killer Roundup caused their disease. A California judge has granted an expedited trial in the case in mid-November.
Too Many Signs
“There’s a lot of research that says we use too many signs. It’s something we all need to be aware of.”
— Kyle Schneweis, director of the Nebraska Department of Transportation. Researchers say the overabundance of yellow deer crossing warning signs leads drivers ignore them, so the DOT is seeking a better way to alert motorists about the danger of deer on rural highways.
“When people commit insurance fraud, it causes premiums to rise for the folks who do follow the rules. It’s wrong, and we’re taking action to stop it.”
— Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, announcing that criminal charges were filed against 60 Pennsylvanians following investigations by the AG’S Insurance Fraud Section — 23 in Eastern Pennsylvania, 10 in Central Pennsylvania and 27 in Western Pennsylvania. The Insurance Fraud Section conducted a statewide sweep during September and October.
Bigger Storms Needed
“The storms that are being analyzed by the Corps are, in my opinion, too small.”
— Jim Blackburn is one of several Rice University professors concerned that a $31 billion proposal by the Army Corps of Engineers and the Texas General Land Office aimed at protecting the Houston-Galveston area from powerful storm surges doesn’t go far enough. Blackburn said the Corps’ initial study for a coastal barrier following Hurricane Ike doesn’t account for recent, more powerful hurricanes such as Harvey, Irma and Maria.
Transforming Report on Climate Change
“Climate change is transforming where and how we live and presents growing challenges to human health and quality of life, the economy, and the natural systems that support us.”
— A White House report issued the day after Thanksgiving warns that disasters are worsening in the United States because of global warming. The National Climate Assessment, mandated by law every few years and based on more than 1,000 previous research studies, notes that the last few years have smashed U.S. records for damaging weather, costing nearly $400 billion since 2015.