Update - Spring 2007
FASI E-Newsletter
Spring 2007
February 20, 2007
Inside This Issue:

FASI's 38th Annual Conference & Trade Show Preliminary Program

Editor's Corner

FASI Saber Rattling Benefits Injured Workers

Membership Report

New Member Profile

Communications Committee Report

Legislative Update

Contact Us:

FASI Website

E-Mail FASI Headquarters

A Note from the President
--by Sean L. Tobin, CPA, FASI President, Heritage Consultants-Professional Administrators

My fellow FASI members:

I hope this FASI update finds you in good spirits and that the New Year is off to a good start for you and your organization. The FASI Board of Directors and Committee Chairs are busy at work planning for this New Year which could hold some dynamic changes.

FASI held its Winter Conference and Planning Session January 25-26, 2007. I would like to thank all of you who participated in those sessions and for all your hard work and the time you dedicate to the Association.  Committee participation is a great way to learn more about the organization and is open to any member in good standing. If you have an interest in participating on any of our committees, please feel free to contact the committee chair directly or let the association staff know of your interest in participating on a committee. 

The Educational Conference & Trade Show Committee, co-chaired by Bethan Hyde and Gail Shuffler, have already done an outstanding job in the initial planning of this year’s Annual Educational Conference and Tradeshow. The annual meeting is one of those rare opportunities to mix business and pleasure in the luxurious confines that is the Ritz Carlton. I encourage everyone to mark your calendar now for July 22-25, 2007. Visit www.fasi-fl.org for more information on the conference.

As I sit here and write this update, I cannot help but recognize some of the extreme changes that have taken place in our society. As the father of three school-age children who call friends on cell phones, get homework assignments on the internet and instant message people from virtually anywhere, I reflect back to my childhood when two tin cans and a piece of string were the cool way to talk to your friends. Times have changed, or have they? 

In today’s business environment we are all expected to do more with this increase in technology, but at what cost? We can now stay in contact with our friends and colleagues through our use of email, voicemail, text messaging, and all the various wireless applications available at all hours of the day. But what happened to those personal relationships that helped so many of us succeed in business? Where are all those nice chats about the family and that vacation you took, not to mention that crazy TV show the other night? In a technologically advanced society it seems we are losing touch with the personal side of business relationships. How does this impact an industry association? Well, we have a website and we communicate electronically but where have those personal relationships gone? So with that thought in mind, I encourage you to pick up the phone and call your associates, friends, and colleagues. Simply ask them how things are going. Rekindle those personal business relationships and while you are on the phone, invite them to join FASI. Why? Because I cannot think of a better place to rekindle those stagnant business relationships than at the FASI Annual Educational Conference and Trade Show in Naples. Imagine how you would feel if a long lost friend introduced you to Naples...FASI Style!

38th Annual Educational Conference & Trade Show • July 22-25 •
Ritz Carlton, Naples, Florida


SUNDAY, JULY 22, 2007
7:30 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. Golf Outing Registration
8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Golf Outing & Luncheon
4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Registration Open
6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Welcome Reception
MONDAY, JULY 23, 2007
8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Registration Open
9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. FASI Business Meeting (Open Meeting)
9:30 a.m. - 10:20 a.m. Aging Workforce and Succession Planning - The Impact of the Loss of Intellectual Equity and Institutional Knowledge
10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Cashing In On Communication
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Lunch On Your Own
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Legislative Update
2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. The Winds of Change
5:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. Exhibitor Showcase & Prize Drawing
8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Registration Open
9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Hidden Treasures: Pursuit of Subrogation
10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. FASI CSI Naples (Claims Special Investigations)
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Navigating the Litigation Minefield - Case Law Update
12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. FASI Board of Directors Meeting (Open Meeting)
6:30 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. FASI Dinner & Casino Party

Click here to download the exhibitor prospectus, golf forms, and sponsorship forms.

Editor's Corner
--by John (the duffer) Darin

To golf or not to golf, that is the question. For years the FASI Winter Conference hosted a golf tournament to kick off the conference. Through bitter cold January mornings not fit for man nor beast, the FASI-ites would trudge along with their carts and bags at places like Palm Coast and West Palm Beach. Wolves howling, winds whistling through pines with frozen buzzards perched atop them, it was more than a Winter Conference, it was an adventure. Jack London quit coming the year FASI decided to eliminate golf from the agenda. 

But what short memories we have. At the Board of Director's meeting last January, someone (who shall remain thawed but nameless) suggested in passing that FASI ought to consider reinstituting the Winter Golf Tournament. Well, I agree. I shall always cherish the memories I have of playing with a broken hand (before the break was diagnosed) and having my partner offer me his hand warmer. That's friendship. If you had any idea how cold it was that day...and he gave me his handwarmer. I remember guys teeing off only to find their frozen golf balls shattering on impact. (Any fool knows if they had used a fairway wood instead of a driver, the frozen balls might not have broken.)  In addition to mashees, we had dogs and were using "mushies." Ah, those were the days! Fore, five, six...

FASI Saber Rattling Benefits Injured Workers
--by John Darin

Never let it be said the Self-Insured Industries in Florida are more concerned with their bottom lines than they are for their injured workers. A case in point is FASI's decision to file an amicus curiae brief in the case of Tina Bogar-Sanabria v. Beall's, Inc., Florida First District Court of Appeal No. 1D06-3337. In that case the injured worker had settled her case and agreed to give her attorney a guideline fee as required under the amendments to Florida Statute 440.34 which took effect October 1, 2003. The Judge approved the attorney's guideline fee but that's not where the story ends. The injured worker's attorney also wanted the Judge to approve $1,175.00 in paralegal fees to be reimbursed from the settlement. The Judge quite rightly refused to approve the paralegal fees and the injured worker's attorney appealed. Enter FASI (wearing a white hat or maybe a super-hero's cape).

The Association's Board of Director's authorized the filing of an amicus brief and retained the law firm of Wicker, Smith as appellate counsel. A motion was filed expressing FASI's concerns for the inequities which could result if the attorney appealing the Judge's decision prevailed and requested the Court's permission to file an amicus brief. Apparently the Motion did the trick because in a unanimous decision filed shortly thereafter, the Appellate Court affirmed the Judge's decision. Bravo FASI!

Membership Report
--by Mark Reisler, Membership Chair

The Membership Committee meeting held in Orlando in late January of this year was very productive. We discussed a number of issues to enhance the 2007 membership. The committee expressed concern that the Florida self-insured database should be reviewed for accuracy. This should be completed in the first quarter of 2007. The committee also agreed to add a “new members only” welcome reception at our summer conference in Naples so they may personally be recognized and meet the FASI board members.

The committee agreed to focus our membership efforts on self-insured entities, both public and private, since all share similar interests in the self-insured arena. We feel that as self-insured membership grows, associate and carrier membership will grow as well.

The 2007 renewal process is well underway, and we are encouraged by the results to date. A final reminder will be mailed in February to the 2006 members who have not renewed by the February mailing. We expect a lot of activity this month and next with the release of 2007 budgets.

I want to offer a warm welcome the following NEW MEMBERS (as of January 2007):

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida / Integrated Administrators; Ms. Cynthia Howard
  • City of Deerfield Beach, FL; Ms. Linda Hayden
  • City of Jacksonville Beach, FL; Ms. Sue Taylor
  • Pantropics Power, Inc.; Mr. Luis Botas
  • R&D Thiel, Inc.; Mr. Jim Leonard
  • Scott-McRae Group, Inc.; Ms. Joanne Ackman

I want thank each and every member for a successful 2006, and I am looking forward to an even greater 2007.  Please contact FASI directly at 1-800-226-FASI (3274) if you know of anyone interested in discussing FASI memberships, or pass this number on to the interested party, or refer them to the website www.fasi-fl.org.

New Member Profile

Welcome to Pantropics Power, Inc., one of hopefully many a new members to FASI in 2007.

Pantropics Power is a leader in the southeast in providing industrial power systems, such as large generators and motors, to a multitude of entities, including high rises, trucking firms, yacht builders, etc. The power systems furnished by Pantropics Power provide emergency power to these industrial locations in the event of a power failure. No doubt, a real need exists for such products in the hurricane prone area of South Florida.

Pantropics Power is located in Miami, Florida. They have been self-insured for quite some time. There self-insurance crosses many lines of coverage, including general liability and automobile exposures. They enjoy the control self-insurance provides, and they take great pride in promoting safety and loss control throughout the organization.

FASI would like to extend a warm welcome to Pantropics Power, with the hope that they take full advantage of the benefits of being a member of FASI. And we hope to see them in Naples in July.

Communications Committee Report
--by John Darin

The Communications Committee recently voted to continue publishing four copies of the Update on a yearly basis. If anyone would like to submit an article, notice, cartoon, or whatever, the deadlines for future issues will be May 10th, August 10th, November 10th, and February 10th. As always, any breaking news regarding pending legislation, court decisions, etc., will be handled by FASI Newsflash to promptly advise the membership of current issues. FASI will continue to use its e-format with additional links to maximize its networking potential.

Legislative Update
--by Edward M. Shaw, Caspers Company

Rep. Dennis Ross (R-Lakeland) has filed a bill regarding the cancellation of construction contracts. The bill creates Section 627.442, Florida Statutes, and reads as follows: "A person who requires a workers' compensation policy pursuant to a construction contract may not reject a workers' compensation insurance policy issued by a self-insurance fund that is subject to Part V. of chapter 631 based upon the self-insurance fund not being rated by a nationally recognized insurance rating service." As of yet, there is no companion bill filed in the Senate.

If you have questions or comments about the FASI E-Newsletter, please contact: Bill Kautter at bkautter@kmgnet.com (800-226-3274) or Newsletter Chair John Darin at jdarin@wickersmith.com.

Please note that letters and comments sent to the publisher are automatically considered for use in upcoming issues unless you expressly request that they not be used. You may request that you remain anonymous in the case that your letter or comments are used. We reserve the right to edit for brevity and/or clarity.

This eNewsletter is automatically sent to all FASI members as an added, free benefit of membership.

FASI, 222 S Westmonte Dr #101, Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, 800-226-3274.