NEWS (4/30/19): MCWCF issues $21,408 to county agencies for employee safety purchases

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF) has issued grants to agencies providing services in five counties to help reduce employee accidents and injuries, the fund announced April 25.

These sums are part of the MCWCF’s Loss Prevention Grants Program, started in 2014. With this first round of grants in 2019, the fund has issued nearly $210,000 over the course of the program so far.

RECIPIENT Amount Project
Arenac County Animal Control $1,409 Safety equipment
Branch County $5,000 Entrance safety upgrade
Huron-Clinton Metroparks Authority $2,044 Safety equipment
Otsego County $4,531 Ergonomic equipment
Presque Isle County $4,279 Safety equipment
Tuscola County Sheriff’s Office $4,144 Ergonomic chairs
TOTAL GRANTS $21,408  

“Though the program is not even a decade old, it has become a fundamental part of our service to our members,” said Timothy K. McGuire, administrator. “In our 40th anniversary year, the Loss Prevention Grants reflect our continuing commitment to innovation, employee safety and member services.”

The fund was created in 1979 by the Michigan Association of Counties. It now serves 80 members across Michigan, and includes counties, medical care facilities, housing commissions, transit agencies, villages, mental health authorities and other specialty county or multi-county endeavors.

In late 2018, the fund issued premium dividends of $3.3 million to members, the largest single amount in the fund’s history. These dividends reflect remitted premium payments in excess of the fund’s needs.

Clinton County commissioner named a vice president of MCWCF Board of Trustees

LANSING, Mich. — Robert Showers, chairman of the Clinton County Board of Commissioners, has been appointed a vice president of the Board of Trustees of the Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF). Showers was voted into the position by his fellow trustees during a meeting on March 25 in East Lansing.

Showers, who has served on the board since 2017, also serves on the Board of Directors for the Michigan Association of Counties (MAC) and the Board of Directors of the MAC Service Corp.

As an MCWCF trustee, Showers is responsible for overseeing a fund with $34 million in assets serving 80 public entities from Gogebic County to Monroe County.

“Bob’s long service in the workers’ comp field made him a natural choice for the Board in 2017 and a natural choice as a vice president now,” explained Douglas Johnson, Board president and a commissioner for Otsego County.

“I’m an old dog, but I keep looking for new tricks to learn,” quipped Showers. “I thank my fellow trustees for the trust they have placed in me with the vice president position.”

The MCWCF, a nonprofit, member-owned pool, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Its 80 members include county governments, medical care facilities, housing commissions, road commissions, transport authorities, community mental health agencies and villages.

The MCWCF’s Board includes 11 commissioners whose counties participate in the fund. For more information about the fund and its services, contact Administrator Timothy K. McGuire at 517-712-4899 or mcguire@michigancountieswcf.org.

Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund Celebrates 40 Years

LANSING, MI – The Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund celebrated its 40th anniversary on March 1, having grown from 10 Michigan counties to serving 80 Michigan counties, municipalities and organizations. The fund, designed to save members money amid rising health care costs, returns an average 35 percent in dividends to its members annually. In 2018 alone, the dividend was $3.3 million, the largest in the fund’s history.

“As a long-time board member, it’s so gratifying to see the cycle of innovation and investment leading to better and better results for our members,” said Doug Johnson, president of the fund’s board and a commissioner for Otsego County.

The fund was founded in March of 1979 by a group lead by then Michigan Association of Counties Executive Director, A. Barry McGuire, and ten charter counties. Lack of safety programs and rising claims were making workers’ compensation insurance prohibitively expensive, so the Michigan Legislature enacted laws permitting employers to band together and organize self-funded plans.

From the start, the MCWCF’s Board of Trustees emphasized safety, savings and service. Safety programs were and are the fund’s top goal. Not only is it in the best interests of all members to be as safe as possible, but safety measures reduce claims, which reduces premium costs to members. Those savings are then shared with all members — giving everyone an incentive to take workplace safety seriously. Throughout the process, the fund provides incredible customer service and personal attention to each of its 80 members.

The fund also runs an innovative Loss Prevention Grants Program, where members can apply for grant funds to invest in safety equipment. The grant program, started in 2014, has issued nearly $190,000 in grants for items like security equipment, ergonomic office furniture and employee wellness programs.

“Our Loss Prevention Grants Program continues to make a difference for our members and their employees,” said Timothy K. McGuire, the fund’s executive director. “Of course, the ultimate winners here are taxpayers, who know their public servants are working to reduce injuries and health costs.”

Those values are still the cornerstone of the fund, which retains eight original member counties: Livingston, Delta, Ionia, Otsego, Newaygo, Gogebic, Benzie and Cheboygan. The fund is administrated by CompOne.

“The MCWCF Board of Trustees does an outstanding job with oversight,” says McGuire. “The trustees are committed to making sure the members are given the best service and best return on their dollars.”

NEWS (9/19/18): MCWCF issues $18,378 to county agencies for employee safety purchases

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF) has issued grants to agencies providing services in five counties to help reduce employee accidents and injuries, the fund announced Sept. 19.

These sums are part of the MCWCF’s Loss Prevention Grants Program, started in 2014. With this second round of grants in 2018, the fund has issued nearly $190,000 over the course of the program so far.

 RECIPIENT  Amount Project
Otsego County Judicial System $4,747 Security equipment
Newaygo County $5,000 Ergonomic chairs
Dickenson County $2,400  Metal detector
Chippewa County Jail $1,850 Security equipment
Alpena County $4,381 Ergonomic workstations
TOTAL GRANTS  $18,378

During my regular visits to review coverage with members, this program always is a point of conversation – the members simply love it,” said Timothy K. McGuire, administrator. “We are helping them invest in their people by keeping them safe. The benefits only multiply from there.”

The fund was created in 1979 by the Michigan Association of Counties. It now serves 80 members across Michigan, and includes counties, medical care facilities, housing commissions, transit agencies, villages, mental health authorities and other specialty county or multi-county endeavors.

At the end of 2017, the fund issued premium dividends of $3.2 million to members, the largest single amount in the fund’s history. These dividends reflect remitted premium payments in excess of the fund’s needs.

Fall is the Perfect Time to Visit Members in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Fall in Michigan is a magical time – beautiful trees, crisp air and radiant sunshine (we hope!) before winter arrives. Recently, we celebrated Michigan’s fall by taking a trip up north to celebrate some of our members in the Upper Peninsula. We may be on call 24/7, but our one-on-one, face-to-face time is still our favorite way to say hello and check in on our members. Thanks so much to the following members for allowing us to drop by and say hello!

  • Sherry DuPont, Memominee County Board of Commissioners
  • Cherie Gagnon, Delta Area Transit Authority
  • Dotty LaJoye, Central Upper Peninsula Planning & Development
  • Lynn Woelffer, Public Health, Delta and Menominee Counties
  • Christy Paul, Dickinson County
  • Dave Rivard, Kathy Blixt And Philip Strom, Delta County
Menominee County Courthouse

The beautiful and historic Memominee County Courthouse.

Administrator Tim McGuire with MCWCF Board Member Dave Rivard of Delta County.

Dotty LaJoye with Tim McGuire, Administrator of MCWCF

Administrator Tim McGuire with Dotty LaJoye of Central Upper Peninsula Planning & Development.

Kathy Blixt of Delta County, with MCWCF Administrator Tim McGuire

Administrator Tim McGuire with Kathy Blixt of Delta County.

MIOSHA Offers $250,000 in Grants to Keep Workers Safe

Small Employers Urged to Apply for Matching MIWISH Grants of Up to $5,000

Employers with up to 250 employees can now apply for a matching grant of up to $5,000 to make improvements in their workplace safety and health, the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) announced today. The goal of the MIOSHA Workplace Improvement to Safety and Health (MIWISH) grant program is to create a safer and healthier work environment and reduce the risk of injury and illness to workers in Michigan.

“We are encouraging employers to step up workplace safety and health,” said MIOSHA Director Bart Pickelman. “With a total of $250,000 available from MIOSHA, we’re pleased to partner with employers who want to expand their safety and health programs.”

The MIWISH grants will be offered to employers to purchase safety and health-related equipment and equipment-related training that will provide a safer and healthier work environment. Preference will be given to employers in high hazard industries identified in MIOSHA’s 2019-2023 Strategic Plan. All projects will be evaluated based on the specific hazards addressed. The grant period begins October 1, 2018, the start of MIOSHA’s 2019 fiscal year, and continues on an ongoing basis until grant funding is expended.

To qualify for the MIWISH grant program, an employer must meet the following conditions:

  • Have 250 employees or less, company-wide.
  • Come under the jurisdiction of MIOSHA.
  • A qualified safety professional or safety committee must have conducted a site-specific evaluation justifying the equipment purchase.
  • The grant project must be consistent with the recommendations of the safety and/or health evaluation and must directly relate to improvements that will lead to a reduction in the risk of injury or disease to employees.
  • The employer must have the knowledge and experience to complete the project and must be committed to its implementation.
  • The employer must be able to match the grant money awarded and all estimated project costs must be covered.

Recommended actions must be in the form of equipment or work area modifications to be used to reduce workplace hazards. Only items referenced in the application can be considered eligible, within the proposed project.

Some equipment examples include:

  • Residential Fall Protection Systems
  • Lifting Equipment or Portable Lifting Equipment for In-home Care or Small Nursing/Residential Care Facilities
  • Monitoring Equipment for Confined Space Entry
  • Noise Reduction Engineering Controls
  • Lock Out/Tag Out Systems
  • Cooling Systems for Agriculture-based Worksites
  • Eyewash Stations for the Accommodations Industry

A limited number of MIWISH grants will be available to training organizations. To be eligible, the training organization must make the equipment available to its members for use.

For more information about the MIWISH grant program and how to apply, please visit www.michigan.gov/mioshagrants/, or contact MIOSHA’s Consultation Education and Training grant administrator at (517) 284-7811.

The MIWISH grant program follows the success of the MIOSHA Safety and Health Improvement Program (MiSHIP) grants that were offered in 2015 in conjunction with MIOSHA’s 40th anniversary.

NEWS (4/23/18): MCWCF issues $16,000 to county agencies for employee safety purchases

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF) has issued grants to agencies providing services in eight counties to help reduce employee accidents and injuries, the fund announced April 22.

These sums are part of the MCWCF’s Loss Prevention Grants Program, started in 2014. With this first round of grants in 2018, the fund has issued nearly $170,000 over the course of the program so far.

 RECIPIENT  Amount Project
Keweenaw County Sheriff’s Office $1,139.97 Ergonomic chairs
Huron-Clinton Metroparks (serving the counties
of Livingston, Macomb, Washtenaw and Wayne)
$5,000 Ergonomic workstations
Otsego County $4,957  Ergonomic chairs
Wexford County $5,000 Ergonomic workstations
TOTAL GRANTS  $16,097

“This is one of the best parts of the work of the fund,” said Timothy K. McGuire, administrator. “We are helping members invest in equipment that prevents injuries, that prevents accidents. Yes, this saves the member and the fund money through fewer claims, but, more importantly, it raises the quality of life of public employees who do not see their health damaged by unfortunate events. We are so proud of this program.”

The fund was created in 1979 by the Michigan Association of Counties. It now serves more than 80 members across Michigan, and includes counties, medical care facilities, housing commissions, transit agencies, villages, mental health authorities and other specialty county or multi-county endeavors.

At the end of 2017, the fund issued premium dividends of $3.2 million to members, the largest single amount in the fund’s history. These dividends reflect remitted premium payments in excess of the fund’s needs.

NEWS (11/13/2017): Counties’ fund announces yet another record dividend for workers’ comp members

Members of the Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF) will receive $3.2 million in premium dividends this fall, the largest single-year dividend in the fund’s nearly 40-year history.

These dividends result from “surplus” funds from policy premiums paid by members, but not utilized due to the fund’s excellent claims management and innovative loss prevention strategies, explained Timothy K. McGuire, the fund’s administrator.

“The focus of the fund is on employee protection,” McGuire said. “We do webinars, newsletters, on-site safety visits, whatever we can to assist our members in identifying ways to prevent injuries. When injuries are prevented, claims go down, which leads to these premium dividends.”

The fund, a nonprofit, member-owned pool, was started in 1979. Its 81 members include county governments, medical care facilities, housing commissions, road commissions, transport authorities, community mental health agencies and villages.

“As a long-time board member, it’s so gratifying to see the cycle of innovation and investment leading to better and better results for our members,” said Doug Johnson, president of the fund’s board and a commissioner for Otsego County.

In addition to issuing record dividends, the fund continues its Loss Prevention Grants program, which, after a round of grants in September, has now provided more than $150,000 since 2014. These grants help members to make investments in equipment to protect employees on the job.

NEWS (11/7/2017): Counties’ fund announces largest dividend in its nearly 40-year history

Members of the Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF) will receive $3.1 million in premium dividends this fall, the largest single-year dividend in the fund’s nearly 40-year history.

These dividends result from “surplus” funds from policy premiums paid by members, but not utilized due to the fund’s excellent claims management and innovative loss prevention strategies, explained Timothy K. McGuire, the fund’s administrator.

“We send out so much material on how to protect employees – webinars, email blasts, newsletters, on-site consultant visits – that I’m sure members get a little annoyed,” McGuire said. “Of course, all that work pays off at the end of the year when we get return so many dollars to them in dividends. As we did last year, we are issuing a record dividend – and maintaining our strong financial history that goes back four decades.

The fund, a nonprofit, member-owned pool, was started in 1979. Its 83 members stretch from Gogebic County in the western Upper Peninsula to Monroe County in Southeast Michigan. In addition to county governments, the fund insures medical care facilities, housing commissions, road commissions, transport authorities, community mental health agencies and two villages.

The dividend announcement comes on the heels of another milestone for the fund: passing the $100,000 in total grants issued under its Loss Prevention Grants Program.

Since its adoption in 2014, the program has issued about $125,000 in grants to nearly 50 member entities to pay for ergonomic office equipment, officer protective gear and other items to boost employee safety.

NEWS (9/28/17): MCWCF issues more than $17,000 to county agencies for employee safety purchases


The Michigan Counties Workers’ Compensation Fund (MCWCF) has issued grants to agencies in six counties to help reduce employee accidents and injuries, the fund announced Sept. 26.

These sums are part of the MCWCF’s Loss Prevention Grants Program, started in 2014. With this second round of grants in 2017, the fund has issued more than $33,000 to members this year, and more than $150,000 over the course of the program so far.

 RECIPIENT  Amount Project
 Alpena County  $3,500  Security wall
 Chippewa County 911  $4,243  Ergonomic chairs
 Delta County Airport  $1,385  Ergonomic equipment
 Isabella County Adult Day Program $2,526.82  Power lifts, patient sliders
Livingston County Emergency Mgt. $1,095.30  Personal protection gear
Newaygo County  $4,662  Ergonomic workstations
TOTAL GRANTS  $17,412

“Thank you so much for aiding in promoting the safety of our employees,” said Kelly Smith, manager of Delta County Airport.

“Oh my gosh! Thank you! I’m so happy for my staff (and their backs),” wrote Michelle Robbins of Chippewa County.

“The response from our membership to this initiative has been outstanding,” explained Timothy K. McGuire, administrator. “We are protecting public employees and conserving precious public dollars. Our board members could not be more pleased with this progress.”

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