Special Edition V.32 (April 2020)
GOOD NEWS (for a change)
MMTA Workers’ Comp. Trust Members To Deliver Their Own $1.43 MILLION Financial Stimulus
WCT Refund

The Trustees of the MMTA Workers’ Compensation Trust are pleased to announce the declaration of a $1,430,000 refund to be distributed to participating members (fund years 2015, 2016 & 2018) sometime in May.

The combined refunds from just the past three years have totaled over $3 million – members are again calling it the Trust’s version of economic stimulus and it couldn’t come at a better time. The sheer size of the refund checks will go a long way towards offsetting some of the economic difficulties all Maine businesses have been facing due to the current pandemic and our members will hopefully be able to use the money to jump-start future investment in preparation for the eventual economic recovery.

This consistent surplus declaration is the product of total dedication to safety efforts and aggressive return to work programs that benefit both employers and their employees. The MMTA Workers’ Comp. Trust is proud to be 63 members strong with a proven track record of low rates and the return of almost $27 million in surplus premiums over the past 26 years.

Group self-insurance isn’t for everyone due to its inherent risk of assessment and the Trust’s continuing requirement to remain committed to spending time and resources to mitigate the causes and the subsequent cost of injuries. If you would like more information on the program, visit us at www.workerscompme.com and fill out a short form for us to contact you.
Online Survey to Gather Data on Coronavirus Economic Impacts
April 30, 2020

As reported Tuesday, Governor Mills has released her plan to slowly reopen Maine’s economy. We have heard from many members, and from our counterparts at other trade associations, that there is some frustration, uncertainty and ambiguity with the plan and the significant practical impacts on Maine businesses.

To that end, the Maine business community is working on a collective way to measure the impact of the Governor’s reopening plan by gathering data from different industries, including trucking. Please take a moment to fill out a short online survey that will allow us to better inform the Governor’s office of the impacts to MMTA members.

Disposable Surgical Masks Available Through MMTA
April 29, 2020

Our industry’s frustration with procuring PPE during the pandemic has been well documented here in this e-newsletter. Initially, we were told to request PPE through the Maine CDC/EMA which we did, but to no avail. As a partial solution to our challenge, an MMTA member contacted us because they had access to ordering disposable surgical masks and wondered if we wanted to purchase some to make available to our members.

These 15,000 masks have arrived this morning and are now available to purchase at $0.56 each, plus tax and the cost to ship them to you if you choose. We reserve the right to limit the amount members order so as to make sure they are available to everyone who needs them – but only if you act quickly. If you have already ordered when the original PPE request notification was sent our in March e-newsletters you do not need to order again as your order and invoice are currently being processed.

PLEASE NOTE the original request to the State was for N95 masks and the ones we have on hand are disposable surgical masks that do not offer the same protection as N95 certified masks. But one of the things we have been hearing from members is that they would like to offer their drivers and other employees at least some minimal protection, even if it is a homemade or disposable mask.

To place an order for disposable surgical masks, click on the link HERE. You will be asked how you want to receive your masks – whether you want to pick them up at the MMTA office (restrictions apply), or you want us to ship them to you with your shipping information (your cost) or we will pay for shipping and invoice you for that amount.

IMPORTANT: If you take delivery of the disposable masks, your company assumes all liability for their use, protection and any exposure that might result from placing them in service. MMTA does not warranty anything about these masks – we are simply making them available for members and do not accept any risk associated with them whatsoever. If you and your company do not agree to these terms, please do not submit an order.

Finally, we have still not heard back from the State about our order for other PPE such as gloves, wipes and sanitizer. While it is looking unlikely that we will receive this needed PPE from the State, we will continue to look for private solutions and we will keep members posted if anything develops. In the interest of having one location for all of the information, we have developed a PPE Resources page that we will update as new information becomes available.

As indicated previously, MMTA’s objective is to provide members with resources to obtain PPE and we do not advocate for or sponsor any of the suppliers or equipment listed.
Maine BMV Plans Gradual Reopening
April 30, 2020

After weeks of total closure, followed by weeks of partial staff working from home, Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap has told MMTA he is working on a return to work plan for their staff starting next week. This plan will likely take the form of a work rotation to maintain social distancing, and BMV’s public services will open at a later time on an appointment basis.

We do not know what this will mean for processing expectations during this transition and into the future. We do know their reduced staffing levels in the past few weeks has produced backlogs despite their best efforts to keep up with the services they provide that keep the trucking industry moving. Another component to setting expectations is that their protocol is to quarantine incoming mail for two days before opening it – which is important to know when timing your service needs if you have sent in payment.

The purpose of this article is to let MMTA members know about BMV’s plans in the context of registering equipment, managing new or existing IFTA/IRP accounts, managing CDL credentialing, etc. We have heard from many members with many different service needs and will continue to update readers of this e-newsletter as details develop and we work with BMV during this transition. BMV would like us to remind the industry that many services can be done through their online services instead of relying on the mail.

If you have any questions, please contact Cecile, Tim or Brian.
We will keep MMTA members posted as new information comes in. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to email Tim, Randy or Brian if you have questions.