Thursday, August 31, 2017

An interesting read; Massachusetts law about governmental health insurance.

Massachusetts General Law; chapter 32B:

Section 7Premiums; withholding, contribution; direct payment

Section 7. (a) With respect to any period of insurance which is in effect for an active or retired employee and dependent there shall be withheld from each payment of salary, wages, other compensation, pension or retirement allowance, subject to the provisions of section nine A, fifty per cent of the premium for the insurance of the employee and his dependents and the governmental unit shall contribute the remaining fifty per cent of such premium. The governmental unit shall also contribute fifty per cent of any additional premium which may be required for coverage of an employee's dependent child who is nineteen years of age or over and mentally or physically incapable of earning his own living.

So it is not a corporation or private business covered by the 50%/50% as someone who is uninformed commented. It is a governmental unit, as in a Town, that is required to pay at least 50% of health insurance premium. The town can agree to pay more but it only has to pay 50%, that is the law and it is not hard to understand nor is the math. That is no gibberish either!

One would think that someone who serves on the Templeton Insurance Advisory Committee would be up on these things. Maybe there lie the problem?

So a town employee says I am uninformed because they claim the information is wrong. Well, that is the information taken from the "budget book" handed out at a selectmen meeting and used during the budget process. Since the selectmen are the ones who eventually approve the health insurance costs that taxpayers pay for, that wold seem to indicate the selectmen are uninformed and that the information they put forward is wrong.

I believe the important numbers are the 75/25 split for health insurance costs and the fact that yearly increases are reaching double digit numbers. If health insurance increases by 13% and Town revenue from property taxes can only increase by 2 1/2% without a town approved override, I do not think you have to be a math genius to figure out that scenario cannot continue for long without something changing. Perhaps the split should change with the increase in costs. A 13% increase in insurance costs is met with a 13% change in the split, until you get to the 50/50 split. I believe the law is that the town has to pay at least 50% of the costs.

How qualified does one have to be to be hired for Templeton highway? Have a license/CDL class B, not on drugs, able to show up on time.

What happened to all the bluster about big changes coming to Advisory Committee/ Resignations, your outta here, etc, etc. Appears that is all it was, bluster and bull shit! Maybe that is why the selectmen are having a retreat at a fire station!

The yearly costs for health insurance are not on the Town budget versus actual document. Why not? There is no accounting of OPEB funds on the budget versus actual documents. Why not? Those questions have been asked and no answers provided to date, a week so far without answers, so why would any other questions be asked concerning other things when those have not been answered.