By ANDY MCCAMMON
Highlights of the business discussed at the Tuesday meeting of the Common Council of the City of Brazil included:
-The creation of a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) and flex spending account (FSA) for city employees
The council voted to approve Ordinance 3-2006, a measure that would create HRA and FSA accounts to ease medical costs to city employees.
The ordinance represents the city's response to employee concerns related to the $1,000 deductible specified under the city's recently approved health insurance agreement with Humana Healthcare.
The city-funded HRA will mitigate the Humana deductible at no cost to employees, while the FSA allows employees to make tax-free deposits from their paychecks that can be used for a variety of health-related expenses.
The Brazil Board of Works will select a firm to administrate the accounts Friday, and Mayor Tom Arthur said he expects the accounts to be available to employees by Feb. 1.
-The first readings of two new ordinances
The council approved ordinances 1-2006 and 2-2006 for second readings at its next meeting.
Ordinance 1-2006 would authorize the city "to make temporary loans in anticipation of current revenues ... being collected for the fiscal year 2006."
"This is just to help with cash flow," Arthur said.
Ordinance 2-2006 would prohibit parking on the east side of Franklin Street between National Avenue and Jackson Street. The law would complement a 1931 ordinance prohibiting parking on the west side of the narrow roadway.
-The election of a president pro tempore for 2006
Council members voted unanimously to re-appoint Ann Bradshaw as president pro tempore. Bradshaw will preside over the council meetings Arthur is unable to attend.
The council also approved meeting times for 2006. This year's schedule will be the same as last year's, with meetings on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. in the council chambers at City Hall.