[The Brazil Times nameplate] Fair ~ 55°F  
High: 67°F ~ Low: 50°F
Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

County commissioners renew health insurance

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

During the Clay County Commissioners meeting Monday, Kathy Dunn, of Dunn and Associates, presented a health insurance renewal plan and various programs offered to the commissioners.

Dunn explained the new requirements by law have been implemented so the plan she proposed is compliant with regulations, including increasing the deductible and co-insurance. According to Dunn, the Supreme Court is currently reviewing these laws to decide whether to keep them or not.

The county's account buys two types of insurance -- one being the specific insurance, which insures the individual, and an aggregate type, which involves the group as a whole. Dunn and Associates looked at about 30 different bids for the insurance this year. Dunn recommended the quote from American Fidelity, the 12-12 policy with a deductible of $47,500, and the 12-12 aggregate policy.

Dunn recommended 4.5 percent for the employee contribution, which the commissioners approved effective July 1, 2012. She recommended an increase for dental and vision insurance by $100, changing it from $400 to $500. The commissioners approved this recommendation, effective July 1, 2012.

Dunn explained a new $4 generic drug program that she recommended for the county. The program offers a full reimbursement if the participant buys a generic $4 drug with cash instead of using their insurance. A list of all the $4 generic drugs is available.

"The plan will pay you back," Dunn said. "It's a win-win for both the plan and the participants." The commissioners decided to adopt this program effective July 1, 2012.

Dunn also recommended an organ transplant policy, which the commissioners approved effective July 1, 2012.

The commissioners and Dunn also discussed a flexible spending account program, which allows employees to choose an amount to be withheld from their paychecks each year that goes into an account. The money saved can be used for any out-of-pocket medical, dental or vision expenses.

According to Dunn, the program equals 20-40 percent of tax savings, because the money is withheld pre-taxes. The negative part of the program is there is a "use it or lose it" aspect, meaning if the money saved isn't used within the year, you will lose the money saved. However, she said her company sends out monthly statements and makes reminder phone calls toward the end of the year to keep individuals from losing money.

"It does save you money," Commissioner Paul Sinders said, who used the program when he worked for the school corporation. "You have to project what you'll spend out of pocket that calendar year. If you project too much, then yes, you lose it. But I'll be honest with you, I never lost any money from it."

Dunn said the flexible savings money could also be used for dependent care for children or elderly. She explained the amount could automatically be taken out of the account to pay for an expense without having to file any paperwork.

"We make it pretty easy on people," she said. "I think your employees will appreciate it."

The commissioners approved the optional program to be effective Jan. 1, 2013, giving them time to educate the county employees about the new program.

In addition, the commissioners spoke about the upcoming state law regarding smoke-free buildings. County Attorney Eric Somheil told the commissioners each county building will have to have a sign at each entrance, stating there is no smoking within 8 feet of the entrance. He also said at least two signs need to be inside each building, stating smoking is prohibited by state law.

Also during the meeting, Clay County Auditor Mary Jo Alumbaugh presented the commissioners with a plan for grant application procedures. Alumbaugh said the Auditor's Office receives dozens of grants, and they need specific procedures passed to make it a smoother process. She said she needs to know which type of grant it is, where the money goes once it comes in, how much they are requesting and if the county must match it, among other things.

Alumbaugh said the proposal states someone cannot apply for a grant until it has been approved by the commissioners at a monthly meeting. Certain grants that involve salaries will have to be approved by the council as well.

The issue was tabled for the July meeting so the commissioners would have time to look over the proposal.

In other county news:

* The commissioners accepted two contracts for an Emergency Management Agency employee, Melissa Buell. The first contract is effective through June 2012, to catch up, and the second contract is through June 2013,

* Deputy Auditor Jennifer Best-Flater updated the commissioners on how the Health Fair went. She said there were 60 participants for the blood drive this year, meaning every year participants increase by 5-10 people. She asked the commissioners if she could begin working on starting a monthly blood pressure screening for county employees,

* The commissioners approved three ordinances -- No. 12, 14 and 15 -- to prohibit nepotism among the county workforce. The ordinances state an office holder cannot hire a family member or be in direct supervision of a relative. The commissioners also made changes and approved the copy to go in the employee handbook. The Clay County Council will need to approve Ordinance No. 12,

* The commissioners approved Brad Stultz as the Clay County Highway Department supervisor, and

* The commissioners approved a state bridge project on State Road 42, east of Poland, for an unofficial local detour.

Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. If you feel that a comment is offensive, please Login or Create an account first, and then you will be able to flag a comment as objectionable. Please also note that those who post comments on thebraziltimes.com may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.

The commissioners approved a state bridge project on State Road 42,Why did an brand new road get put in at sr 59 to Clay City? There was not one pot hole and before you guys replaced that road it was the best surface to drive on in the county. Govt waste fraud and abuse.

-- Posted by Combat VET on Thu, Jun 7, 2012, at 1:08 PM

And BTW Mr Sinders when are you going to investigate why I was forced to move from my home that I reported to you last meeting? Yea that's right you and Mr Rebeger are ignoring me! We will see how long that lasts. Shame on you!

-- Posted by Combat VET on Thu, Jun 7, 2012, at 1:12 PM

You ran for a county office and ask why the Commissioner's approved a state bridge project? The state doesn't ask a County Commissioner for approval on state projects.

-- Posted by commonman1 on Thu, Jun 7, 2012, at 3:17 PM

The approval was to use a county road for a detour.

-- Posted by commonman1 on Thu, Jun 7, 2012, at 3:19 PM

I know right, what a big cluster jam they pave the best road in the county and we still have horrible roads! Why not use some of that money to fix roads that need it. Just sayin commonman1.

-- Posted by Combat VET on Thu, Jun 7, 2012, at 7:53 PM

State road funds will never get used on County Roads under present state law. Just sayin Combat Vet. The county funds are controlled by the county. State funds are used on state roads. The county doesn't get much of a say when it comes to IDOT funds.

-- Posted by commonman1 on Thu, Jun 7, 2012, at 10:36 PM

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: