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Haley names workers’ compensation panel members, chairman


By Chuck Crumbo
ccrumbo@scbiznews.com
Published Dec. 5, 2012

Gov. Nikki Haley today appointed Aisha Grant Taylor, an attorney with the Collins & Lacy law firm in Columbia, to the state Workers’ Compensation Commission.

The governor also promoted Scott Beck, who has served on the panel since 2008, to chairman, and reappointed Andrea Roche.

Aisha Grant Taylor
Aisha Grant Taylor
Scott Beck
Scott Beck
Andrea Roche
Andrea Roche
As chairman, Beck serves as CEO of the commission and is responsible for implementing the policies established by the board.

Haley described Taylor, who has practiced workers’ compensation defense and employment law, as “a true leader and a hard worker, which is exactly what we wanted to see on the workers’ comp board.”

Prior to joining Collins & Lacy in 2007, Taylor served as a law clerk for 6th Circuit Judge Brooks P. Goldsmith.

A graduate of the University of South Carolina School of Law, Taylor was captain of USC’s 2002 NCAA National Championship women’s track and field team and a four-year Southeastern Conference Scholar Athlete.

Taylor is the third member of the commission to be appointed by Haley, who took office in January 2011.

The workers’ compensation panel is comprised of seven commissioners, each appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the Senate. Members serve six-year terms.

Haley said the commission is making headway in improving customer service for both claimants and employers.

She noted that during her administration, awards have been reduced 50%. Also, the average number of days from when a hearing is requested to when it is held has dropped to 83 days from 233 days.

“That is amazing when it comes to customer service,” Haley said.

Also, the number of appeals has decreased 65%, “which says we are being fair with the claimants as well as with the businesses,” Haley said.

Beck, who has served as interim chairman, said the commission has saved about $100 million in hospitals bills since it changed the way it paid providers. It also has trimmed drug costs.

The savings has translated to lower premiums for workers’ compensation insurance, Beck said.

“Last year, we saw about an $80 million decrease in premiums,” he said. “We’re still realizing a savings.”

Savings of time and money helps both claimants and employer, Haley said.

“Our goal is one, customer service for the claimants,” Haley said. “It’s also customer service for the employers, because what they want is to remember that time is money.”


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