Vermont highlights logging sector reform

BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) Vermont loggers have new protections through a compensation insurance program.

Gov. Phil Scott's administration launched the program this year to modernize safety standards, and to reduce injuries and insurance claims.

This helps them qualify for reduced insurance rates.

The program also helps address insurance avoidance.

It gives people guidance to make sure loggers working on their land have the proper workmen's compensation insurance.

"This will help lower the playing field in the forest economy both in the state and regionally because there's a great disparity between doing business with an insured and uninsured logging operation," said Sam Lincoln, the deputy commissioner of the Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation. "That lower cost of operation can come at the cost of employees well being."

In addition to lowering workers' compensation rates in the logging sector, statewide rates have decreased, saving Vermont businesses about $40 million.