Employee health contributions stay the same
School Board keeps health contributions at 5 percent for 2013-14 school year
Germantown — Germantown School District educators' health contributions will remain unchanged for the 2013-14 school year, district officials decided Monday.
The School Board unanimously approved keeping health contributions for non-AFSCME employees at 5 percent instead of raising it to 6 percent, which had been previously discussed. The decision comes weeks after the board selected Humana over WEA Trust as the district's health insurance carrier. WEA Trust has been the district's insurance carrier for years.
District administrators recommended the employee health contributions remain the same for numerous reasons, including giving employees time to adjust to Humana.
"ACT scores are at their highest level in the district's history and (there are) a lot of positives in the area of academics," Superintendent Jeff Holmes said. "I think ahead of working toward alternative compensation package for our district, it makes a lot of sense that we are able to stay at the 5 percent for this current year given everything we know about insurance and where it's at."
By changing providers, premiums will increase by 3.37 percent, or $165,290. This increase is included in the 2013-14 budget. If the district renewed with WEA Trust it faced between a 12 and 14 percent increase in premiums.
"I just want to point out had we not switched insurance carriers rather than gone with the other bidder, the (contribution) number would be more like 15 percent, rather than 5 percent," board member Bruce Warnimont said.
There is a savings of $294,347 when comparing the Humana $1,000 deductible plan to the WEA renewal rates for their $1,000 deductible plan.
The AFSCME employee group, which is predominantly support staff, is moving from a 3 percent to a 5 percent contribution rate on Oct. 1 and will be provided the same benefits as all employees in the district. Their deductible is also increasing from $100 and $200 to $1,000 and $2,000. To give time to adjust to these changes, Holmes also recommended keeping contributions at 5 percent.
Initial 2013-14 budget projections showed that increasing the employee contributions from 5 percent to 6 percent would balance the budget. The budget has come in better than anticipated, Holmes said, and is still balanced with contribution levels staying the same.
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