CIRMA Excellence in Risk Management Awards

Emerging and ever-evolving risks continue to drive demand for effective public sector risk management programs. At this year’s Annual Meeting of Members event, CIRMA recognized an impressive selection of initiatives and the leaders who helped implement them from around the state. Selected programs feature novel cost-saving opportunities and introduce new and innovative processes and long-term safety strategies.

Each distinguished winner brought a handsome crystal award and a $2,500 Risk Management Grant back to their community. CIRMA Excellence in Risk Management Awards recipients and the towns they represent will be featured in the next issue of Connecticut Town & City magazine.

CIRMA’s 2023 Excellence in Risk Management Awards Recipients

Sustained Risk Management Program

Town of New Canaan

Public entities face unique risks that require sustainable solutions and long-term commitment. Dedicating time to reviewing claims regularly and understanding a municipality’s unique exposures can yield significant benefits—especially when used as part of a holistic approach to managing risk and reducing losses. 

With a laser focus on reducing claim frequency and severity, the Town of New Canaan hand-selected a team dedicated to risk management. The team meticulously reviews claims monthly to monitor trends, identify problem areas, and implement risk mitigation opportunities. 

The Town’s consistent engagement with CIRMA’s Risk Management team and steadfast commitment to managing loss costs have been effective, resulting in a 72% decrease in workers’ compensation claim severity over the last four years. 

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New and Innovative Risk Management Initiative

Town of South Windsor

Collisions caused by distracted driving cost tens of billions of dollars yearly in vehicle and property repair damages, litigation fees, rising insurance rates, and more. 

To help curtail the prevalent risk of distracted driving and improve the overall management of their fleet, the Town of South Windsor installed smart cameras in all town vehicles— the monitoring system captures internal and external footage to identify and notify supervisors of potential risks, including distracted driving.

The distracted driving and fleet monitoring system has proven immensely effective in identifying and reducing high-risk driver behaviors. Insights are shared with key personnel in real-time and inform proactive intervention—supervisors coach drivers to help course correct early on and change behaviors to mitigate future incidents involving motor vehicles. Ancillary program benefits include capturing necessary details in the event of an accident and tracking vehicle telemetries such as idling time, vehicle error codes, and many other helpful data points utilized by fleet vehicle managers. 

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Substantial Impact on Total Cost of Risk

Town of Windsor Locks

Investing in new social and emotional health programs and resources or enhancing an entity’s existing offerings can make a world of difference in reducing risk. Leaders who actively foster employee health and wellness within their organizations and throughout their communities can help nurture a collaborative and responsive culture that yields significant benefits over time. 

Working in concert with department and town leaders, the Town of Windsor Locks formed a progressive program that provides a dynamic suite of resources to help improve the safety and well-being of its employees and the local community. Program initiatives focus on stress reduction and improving social and emotional health and wellness. Education and awareness incentives underpin the program’s success and are bolstered through targeted municipal training and education resources available through CIRMA. 

The program proved successful, yielding significant reductions in Windsor Locks’ total cost of risk. Windsor Locks achieved an impressive 64% decrease in workers’ compensation claims severity and a remarkable 83% decrease in LAP claims severity since 2019. 

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Establishing Risk Management as an Organizational Priority

Town of Harwinton

The Town of Harwinton continues to pave the way forward, using partnership and resourcefulness as a framework for the future. As an actively engaged stakeholder, the Town maximized its partnership with CIRMA to ensure risk management remained a top organizational priority. 

Town-wide priorities spanning from maintaining impeccable OSHA regulation compliance to implementing the latest cybersecurity best practices continue to help build long-term operational resilience. 

The Harwinton team worked closely with CIRMA’s Risk Management team to identify and assess operational exposures to ultimately introduce a powerful collection of risk management resources, policies, and procedures. The Town’s commitment to managing a broad spectrum of municipal exposures continues to have a tremendous impact on maximizing the safety of its employees and the community. 

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