News Update!!: Needles, CA: Needles City Council approved employee healthcare and other benefits plan for 2016.
Members of the Needles City Council approved employee healthcare and other benefits plan for 2016 during a Special Needles City Council Meeting that was held on Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015 inside the Needles City Council Chambers in Needles, California.
– Agenda Item #1:
Employee Healthcare and other Benefits Plan for 2016.
(Action Needed Agenda Item)
According to the City of Needles, this matter was continued from the Needles City Council Meeting held on Tuesday, October 27th, 2015.
Annually the City of Needles seeks proposals for healthcare, dental, vision, life, and disability coverage for it’s employees. Healthcare costs have risen dramatically during the last decade. The four health plan options (attached) offer 2 plans which have increased and two plans that decrease City and employee costs. Last year, the City of Needles offered two health plan options:
** Plan — Employees — Deductible — 2016 Rate Change: **
– Blue Shield PPO Gold — 33 — $500/1,000 — $30,869
– Blue Shield 10% HDHP — 3 — $1,300/2,600 — $ 3,954
Because the 10% HDHP was $1,151 less expensive annually for an employee only and $2,326 less expensive annually for employee + 1, the City offered an annual $800/employee or $1,600/couple Health Savings Account contribution.
This year the other two options are:
– Blue Shield PPO Silver $2,000/4,000 -$115,350
– Blue Shield 20% HDHP $3,000/6,000 -$4,198
Offering the Blue Shield P.P.O. Silver will save the City of Needles and employees $115,350. The current labor agreements includ a provision whereby the cost increases on a 50/50 basis.
Last year, the City of Needles paid between 10–20% of the total cost of insurance based upon whether the coverage was employee only, employee + 1, or employee + family. Sharing the decrease on the basis will save $57,675.
The impact to the employee will range in an annual savings from $828 – $2,719, depending on coverage. The effect is to reduce employee contribution by offering the Blue Shield H.D.H.P. 20%. Currently the employee contributes between $936 – $1,920 annually. The net effect of this plan is that employee may contribute less than last year.
The annual cost difference between the Silver Plan and the H.D.H.P. 20% plan is $24 – $61 depending upon coverage thus not warranting a City of Needles contribution to a HAS, but an individual pretax contribution HAS will be offered to allow employee payment of health care costs with pretax dollars.
Since that the Needles City Council Meeting held on Tuesday, October 27th, 2015, additional information has been distributed to both bargaining units.
Meetings have been held with the SBPEA/Teamsters.
A meeting has been scheduled with the NUEA on Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015.
– Critical Timeline:
Open enrollment extended to Monday, November 9th, 2015.
The City offer the Blue Shield P.P.O. Gold and Blue Shield P.P.O. Silver with 50% cost sharing for the increases and decreases for the upcoming year.
**** You can view the full agenda packet, including Agenda Item #1, is at the following City of Needles website address: ****
** Video from ZachNews on YouTube: **
– Needles City Council: 11-3-2015: Agenda Item #1.
For more information regarding the Needles City Council Meetings, please contact Dale Jones in the City Clerk’s Office at the City of Needles at: 1 (760) 326-2113 Ext. 345.