Farewelling a pioneer
The Local Government Association of Queensland has paid tribute to former LGAQ President Noel Playford AM following the announcement of his retirement as Chair of Local Government Mutual Services (LGMS).
Announcing his decision to retire from the position in June, Mr Playford said that he was proud and honoured to have been Chair of the local government group insurance scheme since 1997, three years after its creation in 1994.
“I’ve watched it grow from its beginning, handling liability claims against councils, to become a one-stop-shop for all forms of local government insurance,” he said.
“Workers compensation for council workers was added in 1998, and then three years ago LGM Assets was added. That was a real game changer, now councils can easily arrange cover through LGMS for all of their diverse insurable risks.”
LGAQ CEO Greg Hallam praised Mr Playford’s steady hand in the Chair as contributing to the declining risk profile of Queensland government and the unprecedented surplus funds distributed to members each year.
“It’s extraordinary what has been achieved over the last decade for local government in Queensland,” he said.
“We’ve saved councils and communities over half a billion dollars – significant money.
“During Noel’s tenure contributions by councils were kept low and risk reserves have grown exponentially.”
Mr Playford said that one of the key highlights during his time as Chair had been watching local government workforce injuries decline.
“When we took over from State Workcover, we provided more rehabilitation services and resources to councils to help them better manage workplace risks. The results have exceeded expectations, with a big reduction in workplace injuries and their severity,” he said. “Councils have also been able to spend the large monetary savings to benefit their communities”.
Mr Playford paid tribute to the staff of Jardine Loyd Thompson for ‘running the ship’, and the support of the LGAQ Board and LGAQ staff.
“The pressure is on to continue to improve and evolve LGMS in the future, and I have no doubt that will be achieved.
“There are exciting times ahead."
Mr Playfords retirement will be June 30th, with his replacement being announced later in May.
Local Government Association of Queensland
LG House, 25 Evelyn Street, Newstead Qld 4006
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