Insurance Coverage

Your OMAG Municipal Property Protection Plan (MPPP) - Coverage for Outdoor Property

As personnel in municipal offices change, replacing the knowledge and experience of the person that served your municipality can be difficult.  Understanding insurance coverage may not be a priority when so many other things demand your attention as a municipal employee. Please let the following serve to provide a description of the coverage for outdoor property that OMAG provides.  

Outdoor Property is sometimes referred to as property in the open and should be listed on your schedule of covered property described as such. Outdoor property does not provide coverage for buildings and is only for the named structures listed below.  

Outdoor Property means retaining walls not part of a building, lawns (including fairways, greens and tees), trees, shrubs, plants, bridges (excluding vehicular bridges), walks, roadways, patios or other paved surfaces, outdoor lighting fixtures (excluding holiday and seasonal lighting), traffic signaling devices or controls, utility poles (including transformers on the poles but not the transmission lines) or emergency communications radio towers or sirens.

Outdoor property is covered for loss or damage only by the following Covered Causes of Loss: Wind, Fire, Lightning, Explosion, Riot or Civil Commotion, Vandalism or Malicious Mischief, or Aircraft or Vehicles. This coverage also applies to the necessary and reasonable expense incurred by the plan member to remove debris of outdoor property at the plan member’s premises caused by or resulting from a covered cause of loss that occurs during the policy period. Such expenses will be paid only if reported to OMAG in writing within 180 days of the date of direct physical loss or damage. This will not increase the limit of coverage that applies to Outdoor Property. 

It is important to understand each MPPP member is automatically provided $100,000 in coverage for outdoor property, including debris removal aggregate in any one plan year; however, trees, shrubs and plants are subject to a maximum of $5,000 per occurrence. Although this $100,000 in coverage is provided to all MPPP members you are responsible for providing timely and accurate lists of such properties so that any loss incurred over the provided limit is properly covered.  To assure adequate protection in the case of a loss, your property needs to be reviewed annually to ensure it is listed on your schedules at replacement cost value.

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Understanding Your OMAG Cyber Liability Coverage

As personnel in municipal offices change, replacing the knowledge and experience of the person that served your municipality can be difficult.  Understanding insurance coverage when so many other things seem to demand our attention may not be a priority. Please let the following serve to provide a basic description of the cyber liability coverage OMAG provides.  Please refer to your cyber liability and data breach response supplemental declarations page to review applicable limits. 

Information Security and Privacy Liability - Covers damages and claims expenses because of a claim for:

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  • theft, loss, or unauthorized disclosure of personally identifiable non-public information or third-party information that is in the care, custody, or control of the insured organization

  • one or more of the following acts or incidents that directly result from a failure of computer security to prevent a security breach

    • the alteration, corruption, destruction, deletion, or damage to data stored on computer systems

    • the failure to prevent transmission of malicious code from computer systems to computer or network systems that are not owned, operated or controlled by an insured; or

    • the participation by the insured organization’s computer systems in a denial of service attack directed against a computer or network systems that are not owned, operated or controlled by an insured

  • failure to timely disclose an incident described above in violation of any breach notice law
    failure to comply with that part of a privacy policy that specifically:

  • prohibits or restricts the disclosure, sharing or selling of a person’s personally identifiable non-public information;

    • requires the insured organization to provide access to personally identifiable non-public information or to correct incomplete or inaccurate personally identifiable non-public information after a request is made by a person

    • mandates procedures and requirements to prevent the loss of personally identifiable non-public information

    • failure to administer (a) an identity theft prevention program or (b) an information disposal program required by regulations and guidelines

Privacy Breach Response Services - Provides privacy breach response services because of:

  • theft, loss, or unauthorized disclosure of personally identifiable non-public information or third-party information that is in the care, custody, or control of the insured organization; or

  • one or more of the following acts or incidents that directly result from a failure of computer security to prevent a security breach

    • the alteration, corruption, destruction, deletion, or damage to data stored on computer systems

    • the failure to prevent transmission of malicious code from computer systems to computer or network systems that are not owned, operated or controlled by an insured; or

    • the participation by the insured organization’s computer systems in a denial of service attack directed against a computer or network systems that are not owned, operated or controlled by an insured.

  • Privacy breach response services include the following:
    forensic and legal assistance from a panel of experts to help determine the extent of the

  • breach and the steps needed to comply with applicable laws

  • notification to persons who must be notified under applicable law
    credit and identity monitoring services to affected individuals
    public relations and crisis management expenses

Regulatory Defense and Penalties - Covers claims expenses and penalties resulting from a claim in the form of a regulatory proceeding resulting from a violation of privacy law and caused by any of the following incidents:

  • theft, loss, or unauthorized disclosure of personally identifiable non-public information or third-party information that is in the care, custody, or control of the insured organization

  • one or more of the following acts or incidents that directly result from a failure of computer security to prevent a security breach

    • the alteration, corruption, destruction, deletion, or damage to data stored on computer systems

    • the failure to prevent transmission of malicious code from computer systems to computer or network systems that are not owned, operated or controlled by an insured; or

    • the participation by the insured organization’s computer systems in a denial of service attack directed against a computer or network systems that are not owned, operated or controlled by an insured

    • failure to timely disclose an incident described above in violation of any breach notice law

Website Media Content Liability - Covers damages and claims expenses for one or more of the following acts committed during the course of the insured organization’s display of media material on its website or on social media web pages created or maintained by or on behalf of the insured organization:

  • Defamation, libel, slander, infliction of emotional distress, outrage, or other tort related to disparagement or harm to the reputation or character of any person or organization

  • Violation of the rights of privacy of an individual

  • Invasion or interference with an individual’s right of publicity

  • Plagiarism, piracy, misappropriation of ideas

  • Infringement of copyright, domain name, trademark, trade name, trade dress, logo etc

  • Improper deep-linking or framing within electronic content

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PCI Fines, Expenses and Costs - Indemnifies insured for PCI Fines, expenses and costs insured becomes legally obligated to pay because of a claim

Cyber Extortion - Indemnifies the insured for certain cyber extortion loss, subject to policy conditions, as a direct result of an extortion threat 

First Party Data Protection - Indemnifies the insured for certain data protection loss incurred as a direct result of: 

  • Alteration, corruption, destruction, deletion, or damage to a data asset

  • Inability to access a data asset that is directly caused by a failure of computer security to prevent a security breach

First Party Network Business Interruption - Indemnifies the insured for certain business interruption loss sustained during the period of restoration as a direct result of the actual and necessary interruption of computer systems caused directly by a failure of computer security to prevent a security breach

The descriptions contained in this communication are for informational purposes only. The exact coverage afforded by the product described herein is subject to and governed by the terms and conditions of each policy issued. 

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MUNICIPAL WATER & WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANT COVERAGE

Many of our Municipal Property Plan members own and operate their own Water and Wastewater Treatment Plants. Operating these plants can present challenges in providing routine plant maintenance, meeting growing population needs, staying in compliance with regulatory requirements and upgrading their outdated structures and equipment. Many have provided these upgrades and many more will soon need to do so. These upgrades can certainly impact values and leave your municipality exposed. Backup generators, upgraded or added pumps, electric control panels and SCADA systems are exposed to lightning and power outages. Buildings, fencing and lighting are exposed to hail and high winds and vandalism. 

 OMAG initiated an appraisal project on these plants in 2016 by partnering with a professional appraisal service and will be providing appraisal reports to all members currently insuring these plants. This is a three-year project scheduled to be completed in the Fall of 2018. These professional appraisals will be provided as a value-added service at no charge to members. Our purpose in performing these appraisals is to be certain that you are provided an accurate replacement value for these structures and equipment.

To be properly insured, all structures at these plants need to be scheduled (listed) and valued separately at replacement value. City Administration and Plant Managers need to review all structures at these plants each year regardless of whether your municipality has experienced an upgrade.   

OMAG is here to assist you in any way we can. Please contact Property Program Manager, Chris Webb, or Underwriting Director, Randy Stone, and let us help you review your coverage.     

 

 

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Using Minors as Volunteers

Using Minors as Volunteers

The responsibility to respond to our members' coverage questions and provide coverage interpretation primary falls on OMAG’s Underwriting and Member Services Departments with support provided by OMAG’s Legal and Risk Management Departments. Providing a clear and consistent response to these inquiries is always our goal.

Our members occasionally ask “May we use minors on special municipal projects as volunteers?  

A person is an employee if they are authorized to act on the behalf of your municipality. It does not matter how old they are, whether they are compensated or a volunteer, or whether they are full or part time. The exception is when an independent contractor relationship exists. 

A minor who performs volunteer services for your municipality can thus create liability. As such, if your municipality is considering using minors on special projects or events or assisting with mowing, trimming or cleanup, at the very least you should be sure that all training and any certification related to the responsibilities of the task have been successfully completed. Additionally, it would be your responsibility to see that any volunteer was properly supervised in the execution of the task assigned. 

Virtually all states set the age of majority at 18, which means people 18 and older are legally considered adults and are subject to all associated rights and responsibilities. Anyone under that age exposes the city to additional risks. For minors under 16, OMAG would refer the municipality to Oklahoma State Statues, Section 72.1 of Title 40 which outlines the types of work minors under 16 may not perform and requires consent of a guardian or parent for all occupations when performed on a volunteer basis. 

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Storm Season and Your Municipality's Auto Exposure

The 2017 storm season is upon us. Protecting your municipality’s autos and equipment can be challenging, as most of our pool members have no means to park or store their equipment to protect it from hail or wind driven debris. During our storm seasons, we find we must dispatch our emergency vehicles to various areas within the municipality to best protect the public. When possible, when we experience this type of event, we should consider moving our autos and equipment to any covered area that we can find. Use of a covered car wash or bank could save your municipality considerable property damage. 

When damage does occur, many times estimates for repair can include a repair method known as Paintless Dent Repair. 

Paintless Dent Repair (PDR), also known as “Paintless Dent Removal” is a collection of techniques for removing minor dents and dings from the body of a motor vehicle. A wide range of damage can be repaired using PDR; however, usually if there is paint damage, PDR may be unsuitable. 

The most common practical use for PDR is the repair of hail damage, door dings, minor body creases, and minor bumper indentations. The techniques can also be applied to help prepare the damaged panel for paint. Such applications are referred to as “push to paint”, or “push for paint”. 

Limiting factors for a successful repair using PDR include the flexibility of the paint, and the amount the metal has been stretched by the damage incurred. Hence, often extremely sharp dents and creases may not be repairable – at least not without painting afterwards. 

Methods of Repair

The most common methods of PDR utilize metal rods and body picks to push the dents out from the inner side of the body panel being repaired. Also, glue may be used from the outside of the panel to pull the dents out. In either case, fine-tuning of the repair often involves “tapping” down the repair to remove small high spots, making the surface flat. PDR may be used on both aluminum and steel panels. If a technician pushes too hard when creating these high spots, the paint will split and the repair is ruined. Quality technicians can use these high spots that are barely visible to match the texture of the paint. 

The technology of PDR has been around for many years. Fluorescent lighting, or in some cases a light-reflection board, is used to see the shadows created by the deformation of the dent. This is an important aspect of the repair process. Without a PDR light board or reflector board, the fine detail of the process is unseen, and the technician cannot locate their tool specifically and cannot remove the damage accurately. The process of PDR requires a technician to specifically push exact locations of metal to precise height, which can be witnessed with use of a PDR reading instrument such as a PDR reflector board or PDR light.  

Many of the larger body shops now offer Paintless Dent Repair as an alternative to the normal body repair and paint. PDR can be done for about one third of the cost in one third of the time and can keep some vehicles from being out of service for longer than necessary or determined to be total losses. Many of these same body shops subcontract the work to shops that use the PDR method. Use of this process, when appropriate, can help the city keep their loss ratios lower with the lower damage repair costs. 
 

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Courtesy Vehicles at Airparks - Are We Covered?

The responsibility to respond to our members' coverage questions and provide coverage interpretation primarily falls on OMAG’s Underwriting and Member Services Departments with support provided by OMAG’s Legal and Risk Management Departments. Providing a clear and consistent response to these inquiries is always our goal.

Our members occasionally ask “If we provide a courtesy vehicle to visitors at our airpark, are we covered?”

Our Municipal Liability Protection Plan (MLPP) provides that coverage is afforded to “Any other person while using an owned automobile with the permission of the named plan member, provided that the person’s actual operation or other actual use of the automobile is within the scope of such permission… “

If the city has scheduled a vehicle on the policy with the appropriate coverage and the city gives an individual permission to drive the vehicle, the city is provided coverage under the plan.

We would suggest that you work with your City Attorney to draw up a Courtesy Car Agreement (example provided below). The driver’s personal information, along with the appropriate city employee signature should be required. The stipulation to stay within city limits is strongly suggested as well as requiring a time and date for the vehicle to be returned.  Any requirement to replace the fuel should be at the discretion of the city.

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Special Events and Use of Facilities Exposure - Municipal Liability Protection Plan (MLPP)

The responsibility to respond to our members' coverage questions and provide coverage interpretation primary falls on OMAG’s Underwriting and Member Services Departments with support provided by OMAG’s Legal and Risk Management Departments. Providing a clear and consistent response to these inquiries is always our goal.

Our members occasionally ask “Are we covered for special events that take place in our municipalities? What if someone is injured in our park or one of our buildings when these special events take place? What if we lease our park or a building to a private group? 

OMAG has prepared a loss bulletin to assist our municipalities in identifying the various areas of liability created under these circumstances and to provide suggested ways to avoid or shift the risk to others where possible. Please take a moment to review the loss bulletin attached and share it with your municipal administrator and board.   

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OMAG Municipal Liability Protection Plan (MLPP) - Who Is Covered?

The responsibility to respond to our members' coverage questions and provide coverage interpretation primary falls on OMAG’s Underwriting and Member Services Departments with support provided by OMAG’s Legal and Risk Management Departments. Providing a clear and consistent response to these inquiries is always our goal.

Our members occasionally ask “Who is covered under the municipality’s general liability plan and how does this plan define an employee? 

Who is covered? Any of the following are covered while acting within the scope of their municipal duties: any member of the municipal governing body, any elected or appointed official of the municipality, any member of boards and commissions of the municipality and any employee of the municipality, as defined in the agreement. 

Definition of Employee: OMAG’s plan mirrors the terms of the Governmental Tort Claims Act in defining the term “employee.” OMAG’s plan defines employee as "any person who has been authorized to act on behalf of the plan member whether that person is acting on a permanent or temporary basis, with or without being compensated, or on a full or part time basis. It includes all elected or appointed officers, members of governing bodies, and other persons designated to act for the plan member, but the term does not mean a person or other legal entity while acting in the capacity of an independent contractor or an employee of an independent contractor." 

Example: An independent contractor would be a person or company that the municipality hires to do a specific job, such as a local contractor to do a street project or an electrical company providing installation or repair. 

NOTE: You should always require the independent contractor to supply the municipality with a certificate of insurance. 

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K-9 Coverage

The responsibility to respond to our members' coverage questions and provide coverage interpretation primary falls on OMAG’s Underwriting and Member Services Departments with support provided by OMAG’s Legal and Risk Management Departments. Providing a clear and consistent response to these inquiries is always our goal.

Our members occasionally ask, “Does the Municipal Liability Protection Plan provide coverage for our police department K-9s? And is there coverage provided when they are off duty?

The OMAG Municipal Liability Protection Plan does provide automatic general liability coverage for your K-9s while on duty. OMAG requires the K-9 and the handler to maintain their CLEET certification. 

One example of how our coverage might work would be: Let’s say the dog is trained to be passive in his response by barking or going on point to indicate he recognizes something, and damage occurs when he jumps on a vehicle. This damage would not be expected, as the normal passive response would not lead to any damage occurring. A third party can file a claim for their damages in this instance.

In another instance, if the dog is trained to respond to drug search in an aggressive manner (by jumping up onto the vehicle to indicate something has been found) and damages the vehicle, then the OMAG policy would not provide coverage.  In this case the officer should take measures (cover paws) if he knows that the dog will respond by jumping on the vehicle. This would be damage that would be expected or intended and is excluded on the policy.

When the K-9 is off duty and being kenneled, it is important to remember that the OMAG policy would respond to a claim filed for bodily injury or property damages only if the K-9 is being kenneled on city property. If the K-9 is being kenneled at a private residence, that individual’s homeowner’s policy would respond, should bodily injury or property damage occur. 

The OMAG policy does not provide coverage for animal mortality, but we do have a market that provides for that type of policy/coverage separately if you should be interested.  

Please contact Randy Stone, Underwriting Director, at (800) 234-9461 or rstone@omag.org if you have questions about this coverage or any other questions about the policies we offer.

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Municipal Fire Department Controlled Burns

The responsibility to respond to our members' coverage questions and provide coverage interpretation primarily falls on OMAG’s Underwriting and Member Services Departments with support provided by OMAG’s Legal and Risk Management Departments. Providing a clear and consistent response to these inquiries is always our goal.

Our members occasionally ask “Does our Municipal Liability Protection Plan (MLPP) provide coverage for any property damage or bodily injury that might occur if our fire department is executing a controlled burn?” 

If your Fire Marshall or Fire Chief has jurisdictional authority to execute these “controlled burns” your next call should be to the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality to notify them and get further instruction on proper handling including any permit that is required or notice to property owners.  As with any other municipal duty performed, we always have a responsibility to protect the public and follow responsible procedure.   

If the proper procedures and regulations are followed OMAG does provide coverage under the MLPP.  Please don't hesitate to contact Randy Stone, Underwriting Director, if you have further questions about this topic.  Randy can be reached at rstone@omag.org or (800) 234-9461.

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