News Digest 1-10-19

Quote of the day

“It is only fair when those workers and those employers are held to the same rules of the game that have been in the state for over 100 years.”
Kris Tefft, Washington Self-Insurers Association
Fox News

Washington state, Trump administration clash over Hanford workers’ comp law change
The Washington State Legislature last year passed a law that only affects Hanford Nuclear Reservation workers by creating a presumption that job-related exposure to chemicals causes certain illnesses including several cancers. The new law also puts the burden on the Department of Energy to prove the workers’ illnesses were not caused by working at Hanford. But the Justice Department is challenging the law on grounds it discriminates against the federal government and its contractors. Fox News

Florida: New state senate insurance chair discusses priorities
The new chairman of the Florida Senate Banking & Insurance Committee identified his primary legislative target Monday as the “one-way” attorney fee system. State Sen. Doug Broxson listed workers’ comp in the top three. Florida Politics

Fallout from opioid epidemic leaves chronic pain patients struggling
When it comes to chronic pain, opioids can be problematic drugs. Patients who suffer from chronic pain are speaking out about new restrictions on opioid access, and the pain they experience as a result. Utica Observer-Dispatch

Horse racing: New York workers’ comp premiums for riders drops
The New York Jockey Injury Compensation Fund has released its 2019 Workers’ Compensation Premium Assessment and Formula, and the initial base payment for horsemen stabled at the New York Racing Association tracks will decrease by 17 percent. Bloodhorse

Pennsylvania: Mercer County allots $20K to local projects
Mercer County, Pennsylvania commissioners last week approved spending a grant from the Pennsylvania Counties Workers’ Compensation Trust to cover most of the county’s share of three projects, including a dam repair. The Herald (Sharon, Pa.)

Montana firefighters pushing for workers’ comp bill
Montana is one of three states in which health insurance for firefighters doesn’t cover diseases proven to be contracted from fighting fires. Now, firefighters are pushing for coverage for cancer and post-traumatic stress disorder in the new legislative session. KECI (Missoula, Mont.)