Alabaster’s insurance costs among lowest

Alabaster Municipal Workers Compensation Fund Marketing Manager Terry Young, left, presents a mock check to Alabaster Mayor David Frings and Alabaster Human Resources Director Clark Boyd with a mock check signifying the amount in insurance costs the city has saved over the past 10 years. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

The Alabama Municipal Workers Compensation Fund presented Alabaster with its “10 Year Award” after organization officials said the city bested the national municipal insurance cost average in nine of the past 10 years.

During a July 26 award presentation at Alabaster City Hall, Municipal Workers Compensation Fund Marketing Manager Terry Young said Alabaster’s insurance costs have been as low as 26 percent below the national average in the past decade, and said the city has averaged about 20 percent lower than the average during the same period.

“This is really an accomplishment,” Young said, noting only 50 of the nearly 700 cities insured through the Alabama League of Municipalities qualified for the 10 Year Award. “Alabaster was definitely in the top 25 percent of that top 50. They have done extremely well.”

Young said the organization looked at several criteria before choosing the award winners, such as workers’ compensation cases and the number of insurance claims. He said the low number of claims and workers’ compensation cases has helped the city save $266,109 in insurance premiums over the last 10 years.

“You substantially outperformed other cities,” Young told Alabaster Mayor David Frings. “I’ve not seen another city that’s beaten the national average nine of the past 10 years.”

Frings said the city works to create a safe work environment for city employees, and said the low number of claims saved the city in several ways.

“When you have an employee go on workers’ comp, you’ve got other expenses like hiring someone to replace him and medical costs. It’s also a hardship on the family,” Frings said. “There are so many things that go awry when someone gets hurt.”