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Texas bill would prohibit loss-safety experience in public contracts


Lawmakers in Texas are considering a bill that would prohibit the use of experience modifiers in awarding contracts for public construction projects.

H.B. 679, introduced Tuesday, addresses such ratings — known as “experience mods” — which are calculated taking into account a company’s workplace safety and loss prevention history.

Experience mods, assigned to employers when purchasing workers compensation coverage, which affects premiums, have been taken into consideration when a project is awarded to a contractor. This bill would end that common practice in Texas.

The bill states that an offer to contract on a project may not require a specific mod to accept the offer and that contract solicitation may not require that a contractor have a specified experience mod when bidding.

In other news, the Texas Division of Workers’ Compensation on Wednesday announced that the National Council on Compensation Insurance is proposing changes to its experience rating methodology that it says would make the calculations more accurate.