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Training Videos

December 1, 2013 Requirements for the Revised Hazard Communications Standard from OSHA

OSHA has revised its Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to align with the United Nations' Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). Two significant changes in the revised standard require the use of new labeling elements and a standardized format for Safety Data Sheets (SDSs), formerly known as, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs). The new label elements and SDS requirements will improve worker understanding of the hazards associated with the chemicals in their workplace. OSHA requires that employers train their workers by December 1, 2013 on the new label elements and Safety Data Sheets format. For more information on the new GHS standard, contact Cole Cummins, your loss control manager, at ccummins@akpei.com.
Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2397)/Comments (0)/

Reflections on APEI Board Service

Amy Lujan, ALASBO

I will be stepping down from APEI Board service after nine years this fall.  It has been an incredible nine years of growth, both for me and for APEI.

When I became Business Manager at Nome Public Schools in 2002, I was told that my predecessor had been on the APEI Board, so I should plan on Board service too!  At that time, we were in the middle of an escalation of property and liability insurance rates following 9-11, so I felt it would be a good time to learn more about what was behind the rates.

I started attending committee and Board meetings and found that APEI was in the middle of a transition.  The company had to find ways to improve its financial position, while still remaining competitive in the market.  Over the next nine years, I was able to take part in that transition from a Board member seat, assisting APEI to be responsive to member needs and improving its structure to meet those needs.

I have remained on the Board because I have benefited from my involvement professionally.  Not only did I meet my original goal of learning about the insurance industry, but I learned from being part of a forward-thinking organization that was pursuing continuous improvement.  Leadership stability, both with staff and the Board, has enabled APEI to keep moving forward and improving.  When I was at Nome Public Schools, the insights I brought back from meetings helped the district to improve its risk management.

I would encourage anyone seeking professional development from involvement with a well-functioning Board to contact APEI Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bush about Board membership.  You’ll learn about the underpinnings of the insurance industry, from risk management to investments, and you’ll take part in a thoughtful planning process for APEI’s future.  The knowledge you’ll gain will benefit your current and future employers!

Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2530)/Comments (0)/

Congratulations to Southwest Region School District Superintendent Dave Piazza

Congratulations to Southwest Region School District Superintendent Dave Piazza for winning the APEI $1,000 Champions for Children scholarship at the recent Alaska School Activities Association spring dinner in Juneau. Mr. Piazza has worked for Southeast Region School District for 15 years and became the Superintendent in 2011.
Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2933)/Comments (0)/

How to Save Premium Dollars

Employee Training

APEI offers many opportunities for our members to save money. One way to save is to utilize the APEI Playground Improvement Grant. In order to reduce the number and severity of playground injuries, APEI will reimburse members for half the cost, up to $10,000 for labor and materials to improve a playground surface. The grant includes the purchase and installation of appropriate unitary surfaces like shredded tires, engineered wood fiber, and rubber tiles.

For more information on APEI’s Playground Improvement Grant, check your loss control manual or contact Cole Cummins, your loss control manager, at ccummins@akpei.com.

Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2664)/Comments (0)/

Changes to the State of Alaska First Report of Injury Forms

The State of Alaska, Division of Workers’ Compensation has made changes to their First Report of Injury Forms.

The employee and the employer will be required to fill out separate forms to first report an occupational injury or illness. Alaska Workers Compensation Board (AWCB) confirms these new forms should be used for all new injury reports starting July 22, 2013.

On the old form (Form 07-6101 Rev 08-2012) the employee and employer sections were both on the same page. The new forms are:

07-6100 -- Employees Report of Occupational Injury or Illness to the Employer

07-6101 – Employer Report of Occupational Injury or Illness to Division of Workers’ Compensation

The State also issuedan instruction sheet on the use of these forms and advises employers that items #13, 15, 16, 17 on form 6101 can be completed by APEI, anditem #14 will be populated by the AWCB upon acceptance of the claim.

APEI felt it was important to provide all members immediate awareness and access to these forms, so you can become familiar with these new requirements.

Please make sure you send both new forms to APEI for our handling.

Updates by the State of Alaska can be found at http://www.labor.state.ak.us/wc/

Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (3598)/Comments (0)/

Members Doing the Right Thing

Employee training is valuable for both employer and employee. Well trained employees will have confidence in their performance, leading to improved production and job satisfaction. Training also helps organizations reduce the risk of violating employment laws and OSHA regulations. APEI just held it's annual OSHA 10 Hour Seminar in Anchorage where members from all over the state came to learn how to stay in compliance with OSHA. Stay tuned for the dates of APEI's annual HR Seminar coming this fall.  
Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2632)/Comments (0)/

About 15-Passenger Vans

From the Desk of the CEO, Jeff Bush

One of the things I like about my job is that new challenges are presented almost daily. Here’s an example:

Recently we received a question from a member’s broker regarding how APEI insures 15-passenger vans. In researching the broker’s question, we learned much.

We have long known that 15 passenger vans are more dangerous than other motor vehicles. Research indicates that 15 passenger vans have a 70% greater chance of rolling over when loaded with 15 people or the equivalent in people and luggage. They also have a higher rate of single vehicle accidents than any other vehicle.

However, research in response to the broker’s question revealed more. School districts should never use such vans to transport kids. Since 1974, federal law has prohibited pre-primary, primary and secondary schools from purchasing or leasing new 15-passenger vans to be used significantly to transport students unless the vans meet the federal standards for school buses. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has determined that 11-15 passenger vans do not and cannot meet many such federal standards, including rollover protection, body joint strength, and crash protection systems.

In short, schools are prohibited by federal law from leasing or purchasing new vans designed to carry more than 10 passengers (even if some seats are removed), if the school intends to use the vehicle to transport students. They are, quite simply, unsafe. “Pre-primary, primary and secondary schools should not use 15-passenger vans for transporting school children, as they do not provide the same level of safety as school buses. It is also against federal law for schools to buy new 15-passenger vans for school transportation purposes.” NHTSA Consumer Advisory, Oct. 10, 2010. Any auto dealer selling a 10+ passenger van to a school district is subject to severe penalties.

We see many vans with seating capacities above 10 on our school district auto schedules. We strongly encourage districts to look for ways to de-commission those vehicles that transport students and replace them with other types of vehicles that meet federal safety standards.

Monday, July 1, 2013/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (3406)/Comments (0)/

Inspection at the Bristol Bay Borough

Abe and Mike at Naknek Lake during an inspection at the Bristol Bay Borough

Saturday, December 1, 2012/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2324)/Comments (0)/

How to Manage Your Social Media Risks

Social media has and continues to change the way we connect and communicate with friends and family. In addition, social media has an effect on how we conduct business. There have been many instances of potential employees not being hired and current employees being fired due to content on their personal social media accounts. A good social media policy will address the expected conduct of employees on their personal social media accounts. It will discuss how comments made on a personal account may affect public opinion regarding their employer. With a good policy in place, you can discipline employees, including possible termination, for inappropriate social media content even if done on the employee’s personal account on personal time. Without a policy in place, taking disciplinary action becomes much more difficult. A good social media policy must also address an employee’s use of the organization’s official social media outlets. The policy should state who is authorized to create and use official social media accounts and who has the authority to delegate those duties. The use of some social media may create a limited public forum. Sites like Facebook that allow public comments do just that. As a public entity, it is important to recognize that censoring such comments may be a violation of the user’s First Amendment freedom of speech rights. This must be taken into account by the public entity when deciding whether or not to use such social media outlets. Each individual policy will look different and house different requirements. However, there are many components to a social media policy that run across most organizations. Here are some specific things to consider including in a good social media policy: Remind employees to become familiar with the employee handbook or code of conduct State that the social media policy applies to multi-media, social networking websites, blogs, and wikis for both professional and personal use State that Internet postings should not disclose any information that is confidential to your organization State that when employees comment on anything relating to their employment a disclaimer should be made; such a disclaimer might say “the views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of (organization name here) Employees should neither claim nor imply that they are speaking on the organization’s behalf unless expressly authorized to do so.” When used effectively, social media can enhance communication and an organization’s public image. But it can also cause serious problems if employees are allowed to use it without restriction. Remember that any time an employee speaks out, regardless of intent, they may be viewed as a representative of the organization. We strongly encourage all members to write and enact a social media policy. As always, it is recommended that the policy be reviewed by an attorney to ensure that it is completely legal.
Saturday, December 1, 2012/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2353)/Comments (0)/

How to Save Premium Dollars

Self Inspection

Self inspections are a great way to find small problems and fix them before they become big problems. Your loss control manual provides an easy to use self-inspection checklist. Completing this for all buildings valued at greater than $400,000 will earn your organization a 3% credit at renewal.
Saturday, December 1, 2012/Author: Alaska Public Entity Insurance/Number of views (2401)/Comments (0)/
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Alaska Public Entity Insurance

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Phone: 907-523-9400

Toll-Free: 877-586-2734

Fax: 907-586-2008