SAIF is the big bully in Oregon workers’ compensation insurance. It claims corporation status when that is expedient and public entity status when that is more advantageous. Unlike private sector competitors, SAIF cannot be sued in the federal court system, cannot be required to pay federal taxes, but can rely on the state of Oregon to do its investing for it and to provide the Public Employees Retirement System that has been plagued by required taxpayer subsidies. The real benefits of SAIF’s stock-market assisted low rates are well-known. The hidden economic costs of removing taxpaying capability from the economy are not well known. More recent personnel and public access to records scandals are actually less significant in the long run than the tilted playing field on which SAIF competes for the Oregon workers’ comp insurance market.
– Marvin McConoughey, Corvallis, Ore.