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About The JPIA

What is the Association of California Water Agencies Joint Powers Insurance Authority (ACWA JPIA)?

The ACWA JPIA or "JPIA" is a public entity formed in 1979 by the water agencies of the state of California. Like its members, the JPIA is a special district in the state of California. Its formation and operation are subject to the provisions of the California Government Code, including the Brown Act. It provides risk-sharing pools to meet the needs of its members for property, liability, workers' compensation, and employee benefits coverage.

The JPIA is a partnership of water agencies working together to share the risks associated with purveying water. The risk-sharing pools of the JPIA are a cost-effective form of risk management available only to public entities, allowing them to bypass the high cost of commercial insurance. The coverages provided by this risk-sharing arrangement are unique to water agencies; the water agencies themselves--their directors and managers--have selected and refined these coverages. Not all water agencies are accepted in to the JPIA. Prospective members must demonstrate a commitment to effective risk management programs.

Becoming a member is just the beginning. Besides handling covered claims for all members, the JPIA provides risk management services and training programs. Risk management consultants who are specialists in the water industry, not generalists, perform on-site visits. Certified treatment plant operators and distribution system operators are on staff. The risk management services includes assistance with Injury and Illness Prevention Programs, ergonomic evaluations, Cal/OSHA regulatory compliance, confined space entry evaluations, noise surveys, and hazard communication programs. In addition, members receive assistance with their personnel policies and procedures as well as help in developing job descriptions and employee handbooks.

The JPIA provides a wide variety of training to its members at little or no cost. An extensive safety video lending library, a risk control manual, a risk transfer manual, monthly safety bulletins and other risk management tools are provided to members at no additional cost.

The JPIA is managed by the directors and managers of the water agencies it serves. The JPIA is constantly evolving to meet the changing needs of its members. Changes are the result of decisions of the various Committees and Board of Directors. Members have opportunities to influence and control the direction and activities of the JPIA through the democratic process.

The JPIA is not an insurance agency or carrier. There are no stockholders, no income taxes, no premium taxes, and no property taxes. There is no profit margin, and no sales commissions. Any excess funds, as well as investment income, for a given coverage year are returned to the member agencies instead of being retained as profit. Historically, commercial insurers have entered and left the public entity insurance market like a revolving door, seeking only market share and profit. The JPIA provides a secure, stable and highly cost-effective alternative for protecting the assets, liabilities and employees of public water agencies.

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