Articles about Health Insurance that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees
Association & Labor Leaders Work Through Weekend
AUGUST 1, 2016: With just 9 minutes remaining in the formal legislative session for the year (which ended Sunday at midnight), the State Senate voted to override Governor Charlie Baker’s veto of a law protecting municipal and teacher retirees from runaway health insurance costs.
As Legislature Convenes Rare Weekend Session
JULY 29, 2016: Our legislative team will be at work on Beacon Hill through the last weekend in July as the state legislature holds rare back-to-back weekend sessions. The Saturday-Sunday sessions mark the end of the formal legislative calendar for the year.
Legislative Override Sought
JULY 8, 2016: Despite wide bipartisan legislative support, Governor Charlie Baker vetoed the two-year extension of the Municipal Retiree Health Insurance Premium Moratorium.
Association officials are now seeking a House and Senate override of the veto, which must take place no later than July 30th.
Retiree Insurance Reform Likely Topic in 2017-18 Session
JUNE 30, 2016: On the final day of Fiscal Year 2016, the State Legislature passed a new state budget for the coming fiscal year. Contained within the budget, as Section 45, is a two-year extension of the Municipal Retiree Insurance Premium Moratorium.
Protects Municipal Retirees and Teachers From Unfair Rate Increases
JUNE 21, 2016: Members are asked to contact their Massachusetts State Senator and Representative and ask that they support Section 46 of the Senate Budget – which protects municipal retirees and retired teachers from unfair increases in local health insurance premiums.
Municipal Premium Moratorium Extended Two Years
MAY 24, 2016: Today, the MA State Senate unanimously passed an amendment to the FY17 budget that extends the municipal retiree insurance premium moratorium for two years - until July 1, 2018. Amendment 91, which received widespread bipartisan support, was passed on a voice vote during the first day of the Senate budget debate.
Extends Insurance Premium Moritorium Until July 2018
MAY 23, 2016: Members are asked for your help in protecting municipal retirees and retired teachers. Health insurance benefits for both groups are largely under the control of local governments, some of which are now threatening to increase insurance premium contribution percentages.
Kicks Off Annual Insurance Open Enrollment
APRIL 6, 2016: Today begins the month-long open enrollment period for the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC). Retirees and employees insured by the GIC now have until May 4, 2016 to make changes to their health insurance coverage or join the retiree dental insurance plan.
OME Prices Drop -7.2%
MARCH 4, 2016: Retirees who are enrolled in the state Group Insurance Commission’s (GIC) Option Medicare Extension (OME) plan received very good news this week – health insurance rates for FY17 will decrease by 7.2%.
Last year, OME enrollees experienced an increase of 6.5%. Two years ago, the same rates decreased 0.4%.
In addition, the GIC has voted to maintain the same copayments and deductibles that have been in effect for the past year, without any increase.
Mass. Officials Play Central Role
JANUARY 2016 VOICE: A major budget deal between the White House and Congress has come to the aid of public retirees, who had been bracing for a major increase in Medicare Part B premiums for 2016.