HB 1720 - Drug-free workplace; employer contributions & taxes; reduced rate

First Reader Summary

A BILL to amend Title 34 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to labor, so as to change the provisions relating to rate of employer contributions under the "Employment Security Law"; to provide that each new or newly covered employer which has implemented a certain drug-free workplace program shall pay contributions at a rate of 0.2 percent lower than certain other rates specified; and for other purposes.

Golden, Tim (177th) Smith, Larry (109th) Bates, Kermit (179th)
Hammontree, James A (4th) Bannister, Charles E (77th)
Status Summary HC: IndR SC: LA: 02/26/98 H - Favorably Reported (Sub)
Page Numbers - 1/ 2/ 3
Code Sections - 34-9-412.1
House Action Senate
2/18/98 Read 1st Time
2/19/98 Read 2nd Time
2/26/98 Favorably Reported
Sub Committee Amend/Sub

HB 1720                                           LC 10 2526S 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                        A BILL TO BE ENTITLED 
                               AN ACT 
 
 
  1- 1  To amend Title 34 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, 
  1- 2  relating to labor, so as to change the provisions relating 
  1- 3  to rate of employer contributions under the "Employment 
  1- 4  Security Law"; to provide that each new or newly covered 
  1- 5  employer which has implemented a certain drug-free workplace 
  1- 6  program shall pay contributions at a rate of 0.2 percent 
  1- 7  lower than certain other rates specified; to change the 
  1- 8  provisions relating to the State-wide Reserve Ratio; to 
  1- 9  provide that, subject to certain limitations and exceptions, 
  1-10  for certain employers which have implemented a drug-free 
  1-11  workplace program certified by the State Board of Workers' 
  1-12  Compensation, the tax rate computed pursuant to certain 
  1-13  provisions under the "Employment Security Law" shall be 
  1-14  reduced by 0.2 percent; to provide that a self-insured 
  1-15  employer or employer member of a group self-insurance fund 
  1-16  who implements a certain drug-free workplace program and who 
  1-17  complies with certain other provisions of law shall be 
  1-18  certified by the State Board of Workers' Compensation as 
  1-19  having a drug-free workplace program; to define certain 
  1-20  terms; to provide an effective date; to repeal conflicting 
  1-21  laws; and for other purposes. 
 
  1-22       BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF GEORGIA: 
 
  1-23                           SECTION 1. 
 
  1-24  Title 34 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating 
  1-25  to labor, is amended by adding at the end of Code Section 
  1-26  34-8-151, relating to rate of employer contributions under 
  1-27  the "Employment Security Law," a new subsection (c) to read 
  1-28  as follows: 
 
  1-29    "(c) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Code 
  1-30    section, each new or newly covered employer which has 
  1-31    implemented a drug-free workplace program certified by the 
  1-32    State Board of Workers' Compensation as provided in Code 
  1-33    Section 34-9-412.1 as complying with the requirements of 
  1-34    Article 11 of Chapter 9 of this title shall pay 
 
 
 
                                 -1- 
 
 
 
  2- 1    contributions at a rate of 0.2 percent lower than the rate 
  2- 2    specified in subsection (a) or (b) of this Code section." 
 
  2- 3                           SECTION 2. 
 
  2- 4  Said title is further amended by striking in its entirety 
  2- 5  subsection (f) of Code Section 34-8-156, relating to the 
  2- 6  State-wide Reserve Ratio under the "Employment Security 
  2- 7  Law," and inserting in lieu thereof the following: 
 
  2- 8    "(f) For any employer which has implemented a drug-free 
  2- 9    workplace program certified by the State Board of Workers' 
  2-10    Compensation pursuant to Code Section 34-9-412.1, the tax 
  2-11    rate computed pursuant to this Code section shall be 
  2-12    reduced by 0.2 percent; provided, however, that the final 
  2-13    resulting tax rate of any employer shall not be less than 
  2-14    0.01 percent and that such reduction shall not be granted 
  2-15    to any employer who is subject to the maximum rate 
  2-16    allowable after application of the State-wide Reserve 
  2-17    Ratio pursuant to the other provisions of this Code 
  2-18    section; provided, further, that any employer that has 
  2-19    failed to file all required tax and wage reports as 
  2-20    described in subsection (b) of Code Section 34-8-155 shall 
  2-21    not be entitled to the reduction of rates otherwise 
  2-22    provided in this subsection. This subsection shall be 
  2-23    repealed in its entirety on December 31, 2002. 
 
  2-24    (f)(g) The computed rates after application of percentage 
  2-25    reductions or increases will be rounded to the nearest 
  2-26    one-hundredth of 1 percent. The Commissioner will give 
  2-27    notice to each employer on any rate change by reason of 
  2-28    the above provisions." 
 
  2-29                           SECTION 3. 
 
  2-30  Said title is further amended in Code Section 34-9-411, 
  2-31  relating to definitions applicable to drug-free workplace 
  2-32  programs, by adding in their respective places the following 
  2-33  new paragraphs: 
 
  2-34      "(7.1) 'Employer member of a group self-insurance fund' 
  2-35      means any employer who is a member of a fund certified 
  2-36      pursuant to Code Section 34-9-153." 
 
  2-37      "(14.1) 'Self-insured employer' means any employer 
  2-38      certified pursuant to Code Section 34-9-127." 
 
  2-39                           SECTION 4. 
 
  2-40  Said title is further amended by adding between Code 
  2-41  Sections 34-9-412 and 34-9-413, relating to drug-free 
 
 
                                 -2- 
 
 
 
  3- 1  workplace programs, a new Code Section 34-9-412.1 to read as 
  3- 2  follows: 
 
  3- 3    "34-9-412.1. 
 
  3- 4    A self-insured employer or an employer member of a group 
  3- 5    self-insurance fund who implements a drug-free workplace 
  3- 6    program substantially in accordance with Code Section 
  3- 7    34-9-413 and who complies with all other provisions of 
  3- 8    this article required of employers in order to qualify for 
  3- 9    insurance premium discounts shall be certified by the 
  3-10    State Board of Workers' Compensation as having a drug-free 
  3-11    workplace program in compliance with this article." 
 
  3-12                           SECTION 5. 
 
  3-13  This Act shall become effective upon its approval by the 
  3-14  Governor or upon its becoming law without such approval. 
 
  3-15                           SECTION 6. 
 
  3-16  All laws and parts of laws in conflict with this Act are 
  3-17  repealed. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                 -3- 

Clerk of the House
Robert E. Rivers, Jr., Clerk
Last Updated on 04/20/98