Pinnacol Tells Court Records Should Remain Private

August 24, 2010

Colorado’s quasi-governmental workers’ compensation insurer Pinnacol Assurance has testified that records concerning a private business incentive event should remain private — yet a state judge disagrees.

In 2009, an investigative reporter for the local Channel 7, KMGH-TV, requested under the Colorado Open Records Act to see documents of the insurer’s incentive event. Pinnacol was criticized for spending its money on “excessive” perks.

“Pinnacol believed this request was improper under Colorado law because it involved disclosing records that do not relate to any public function, and do not involve the expenditure of public funds,” said Ken Ross, Pinnacol president and CEO. “The request, in our view, improperly sought records that could harm Pinnacol’s competitive position and involve improper intrusion into the privacy of individuals who attended the event.”

Pinnacol refused to disclose the information and filed an Application for Determination with the court seeking guidance regarding how provisions of CRS 24-72-204(6) apply to the company. Judge Morris B. Hoffman ruled that Pinnacol is a public company, and that there was no reason to withhold the records.

“We belived having these issues decided by the court would be beneficial to for our stakeholders and for the long-term stability of our business operations,” Ross said in a statement.

Pinnacol said it will be reviewing its options with its legal counsel and board of directors to determine its next course of action.

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