Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Insurance up for county employees

star health insurance

MARION - Insurance premiums for county employees will increase as predicted for the next year. The Marion County Board of Commissioners approved health, dental, vision and life insurance policies for 2010 at its regular meeting Tuesday.

The same health coverage except for higher deductibles will continue next year, with an 11 percent increase in premiums through Aetna Insurance Company.

The county will pay 85 percent of the monthly premium for employees, but only 70 percent for any dependents they claim.

With that reduction in contribution and no contributions to be made to employees' health savings accounts, the county cut its medical costs by 8.4 percent, Commissioner Josh Daniels said.

That's a savings of $330,000 to the county.

"It is unfortunate that everyone in the U.S. is finding themselves with increasing healthcare costs," Daniels said.

Increasing costs to employees wasn't something the board wanted to do, he said.

"But by the budget, we simply had no choice."

The board also approved a resolution to continue dental coverage with Delta Dental, and vision, life and accidental death and dismemberment coverage with Aetna Life Insurance.

In other business, the board authorized payment to defray cost of burial of an indigent veteran, Roger E. Napper, in an amount not to exceed $1,000. Boyd-Born Funeral Home will be handling the arrangements.

The board also accepted proposals for the Workforce Investment Act business services. Marion County Job and Family Services will enter into contract negotiations with Marion CANDO! and the Marion Area Chamber of Commerce for services connecting Marion Connections with area employers and for the collection and analysis of workforce needs data.