SACRAMENTO /California Newswire/ — Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger yesterday issued a statement after Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner rejected a second request by the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Bureau to increase the Worker’s Compensation Claims Cost Benchmark which would have negatively affected California’s businesses and employers as the state works to rebuild its economy:

“Especially, in our current economic climate it is important that we are taking positive action to promote businesses and generate jobs in California,” said Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. “As we continue our efforts to rebuild California’s economy, it’s important that we aren’t adding additional and unnecessary costs on employers and I applaud Commissioner Poizner’s decision today. Throughout my Administration I have worked tirelessly to reduce workers’ compensation insurance rates and the bipartisan reforms that I championed have found success in identifying waste and fraud in the system to create a positive business environment in our state while protecting injured workers.”

Last July, the Governor issued a statement applauding Insurance Commissioner Poizner’s initial decision to reject the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Bureau’s request for a pure premium rate increase that would have had an overwhelmingly negative impact on businesses, employees and California’s economy.

In March 2009, Governor Schwarzenegger sent a letter to Insurance Commissioner Poizner before that initial decision not to increase rates, urging him to reject the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau’s request for a pure premium rate increase.

The Governor has a strong record of working to reform California’s workers’ compensation system:
•In 2004, Governor Schwarzenegger signed historic workers’ compensation reform legislation that has saved employers $55 billion so far and reduced rates by nearly 65 percent.
•In 2006, Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed legislation that would have undermined the bipartisan workers’ compensation reforms passed by the legislature in 2004.