John Garamendi, our state insurance commissioner, has requested that the state workers compenstaion rates be decreased by 15.3%. He previously sought rate decreases of 36.5%, but rates really only fell 26.8%. “They (insurance companies) are making whopping profits,” Garamendi said during a news conference, as reported in the Sacramento Bee. Garamendi went on to say that the overhaul of the workers comp system was “designed to deal with the extraordinary run-up in the cost of workers’ compensation. It was not designed to benefit the insurance industry.”
I am not sure that Mr. Garamendi has any idea of how the insurance industry works. Did he really think that they were lobbying for change to help Californians? Or, were they lobbying for change to help their pocketbooks, and those of their shareholders?
Of course, the insurance industry says that Garamendi is wrong. The insurance industry spokeswoman says that the insurance industry has a history of being underreserved. (Translation to English: We have not put aside enough money in the past and that is not our fault.) Of course, she neglects to mention that insurance company profits are up 38 percent.
How does this effect you, my readers? Some of you will be injured at work. It is extremely difficul to find an attorney these days. Your benefits have been reduced. You may not get the medical help that you need due to new regulations. Why? Because the governor pushed through reforms that help only one group: insurance companies who give him a lot of money every year.