We are all saddened by the loss of life caused by the tornado that devastated suburbs of Oklahoma City. If you're wondering how you can help, USA Today posted this information on relief organizations:
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross has several shelters open in Oklahoma and Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicles have begun delivering hot meals throughout the affected areas. The Red Cross is also working to link loved ones in Moore who are OK through a website called Safe and Well. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief, donate online, or donate by phone at 1-800-RED CROSS.
Since we wrote last week about our lack of confidence in the IRS running health care, the government agency has been blasted with controversy this week over targeting the Tea Party and other conservative political groups for extra scrutiny over tax exemption status. Yesterday ABC News confirmed that the IRS official in charge of tax-exempt organizations between 2009 and 2012, Sarah Hall Ingram, is now the director of the Affordable Care Act office of the IRS. Her former deputy commissioner Joseph Grant is taking the fall, as he was just appointed to lead the tax-exempt office in the beginning of May and has already announced his retirement. The scandal does not increase public confidence in the agency to execute the extremely complicated PPACA, especially if you're a Tea Party member!
A few weeks ago we told you about the giant African land snail, the slimy pest that grows as big as a rat and can eat through stucco and plastic (that story here). They’ve become a real problem in Florida, and are multiplying quickly since one snail can produce 1200 eggs a year. Not only can they eat their way through homes and gardens, they also carry meningitis and can even prove deadly to humans. So earlier this week when a woman in Briar Forest found a very large snail in her garden, Houston started preparing for a full-on snail invasion.
While U.S. businesses figure out how to handle the Affordable Care Act, the Internal Revenue Service is gearing up for the huge task of deciding who pays for it and how much. When the Supreme Court upheld the law last year, it put the IRS in charge, allowing the agency to enforce the mandate through tax penalties.
ATTENTION EMPLOYERS AND SUPERVISORS OF CDL (DOT) DRIVERS!
Join ASA-HC for a training DOT compliant session regarding Reasonable Suspicion Drug and Alcohol Training for supervisors. Mike Macomber, Vice President of Risk Management for Adams Insurance Service, will conduct.
The session is DOT compliant for all supervisors and human resource individuals who supervise CDL drivers covered by DOT.
HB 1468's fate is not looking good if it cannot escape the House Business and Industry Committee. This bill provides the fix to the XL Specialty problem that is giving company's with large workers compensation deductibles fits due to the constraints placed on communications by the insurance carriers. This is a common sense bill that needs to pass, but it will not move any farther unless the committee members hear from their constituents.
The WSJ reports that many businesses affected by the Boston Marathon bombing are sweating the determination whether the bombing will be considered an official act of terrorism. Why? It affects whether the damages sustained will be covered by insurance. We reported last week on the unique nature of terrorism coverage and the broad exclusions now attached to insurance policies.
Back in 2010, we reported on a study finding that 1/5 of small business employers were considering dropping their plans with the onset of Obamacare. In 2012, we reported on a Deloitte study with a similar finding. Guess what?
Few will be sympathetic to BP's complaints that too many of the claims being paid out of the settlement fund are "frivolous" and perhaps even "fictitious." But, it is never a good thing if fraudulent claims are being paid to individuals that sustained little to no damage in the wake of the BP oil spill. Some of the numbers are staggering:
The Boston Marathon bombing was specifically intended by its perpetrator(s) to inflict maximum suffering and carnage on the innocent people caught in the explosion. Watching the video of the explosion, it is incredible that the death toll was not much, much higher, though the non-fatal injuries the blast inflicted were grave. Clearly less important is the physical damage sustained by the surrounding businesses and buildings next to the blast zone.