CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Many employers in West Virginia will again be paying less for workers’ compensation insurance in the coming year.  Governor Earl Ray Tomblin has said this year will be the ninth year for a reduction.

It follows a recommended drop in loss cost rates from the National Council on Compensation Insurance, a key determining factor when it comes to setting workers’ comp insurance premiums.

“When we have good news in West Virginia, we really look forward to celebrating it,” said West Virginia Chamber of Commerce President Steve Roberts.

“The fact that West Virginia has moved from having the highest costs in the nation to now being on a list of those states that are really, really competitive in the workers’ comp area is just huge news.”

West Virginia moved workers’ comp to the private insurance market in 2006.  If this year’s possible reductions are included, rates will have dropped by more than 48 percent, on average, since then.

Roberts said it shows the market works.  “When you provide incentive to make something cheaper, people look for ways to make it cheaper.  When you don’t provide that incentive, they take advantage of it.”

The NCCI’s recommendation for a proposed more than eight percent decrease in loss cost rates still needs the approval of the state Insurance Commission.

If approved, new rates will take effect on November 1.

Roberts was a guest on Thursday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”

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