The Smith County Commissioners Court was presented with the Texas Association of Counties 2016 Safety Award on Tuesday, July 11, 2017.

Isaac Garcia, a representative from the Texas Association of Counties (TAC) Risk Management Pool, presented the award, which he called a county-wide effort.

Counties across the state work hard to prevent employee injuries and to increase workplace safety. Each year, the TAC Risk Management Pool presents awards to recognize counties and governmental entities for their efforts in promoting safety and innovative risk management programs. TAC members participating in the Workers’ Compensation Program are eligible to apply for the annual Safety and Gold Star awards.

“This award is a sincere way of thanking you for your strong commitment to safety and for your participation in the TAC Risk Management Pool,” Ernest Galindo, TAC Assistant Director for Risk Control Services, wrote in a letter to Smith County Judge Nathaniel Moran notifying him of the award. “Congratulations again on this achievement.”

The county’s losses for worker’s compensation have been very good in 2016, as well as the past several years, Garcia told the court. He said he expects to see good things continue in 2017, and for the county to apply for the Gold Star Safety Award. Achieving the Safety Award is made possible when each employee contributes to it, he added.

Smith County Judge Nathaniel Moran congratulated Smith County’s Human Resources Team, made up of County Administrator/HR Director Leonardo Brown, HR Coordinator Esmeralda Delmas and HR Administrative Assistant Jaye Lynn Collins.

Brown thanked his staff, whom he said did not often get a chance to be publicly recognized. He also appreciated all of the Smith County department leaders in doing a good job letting their employees know that the county cares about them and provides them with what they need if they ever get injured at work.

Judge Moran said the Safety Award is not an award that goes to every county. It takes a lot of work and a lot of years to get there, and achieving that status is a great benefit to county employees, he added.