Articles about Health Insurance that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees
Adds Pressure to Growing State Budget Gap
DECEMBER 19, 2014: As reported in the January 2014 edition of the Voice, the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC) is grappling with a significant budget deficit for the current fiscal year.
However, it now appears that the problem is more significant than previously thought. At today’s GIC meeting, Executive Director Dolores Mitchell characterized the deficit as being “north of $120 million” – some $70 million higher than previously thought.
Budget Shortfall Could Trigger Benefit Changes in 2015
NOVEMBER 21, 2014: At its monthly meeting, the state’s Group Insurance Commission discussed a growing concern for the health plan administrators, as well as our Association – a growing multimillion dollar budget shortfall, combined with a downturn in state tax collections.
MTF Report Misleading
OCTOBER 1, 2014: Last week, the Mass. Taxpayers Foundation (MTF) released its latest report on municipal retiree health insurance. As expected the report finds that the cost of municipal health insurance plans is unsustainable, and as such, benefit reductions are called for. Click here to view the report.
Teachers and Municipal Retirees Protected
July 2014 Voice: Retired teachers and municipal employees will receive a two-year reprieve from increased health insurance contribution percentage rates due to a provision contained within the FY15 state budget. The law extends the same protection to municipal retirees that has been long afforded to state retirees.
Healthcare Contribution Moratorium Approved
JUNE 30, 2014: House and Senate budget negotiators reached an agreement on the Commonwealth’s $36.4 billion fiscal 2015 budget over the weekend. The measure will be approved by both the House and Senate, and then sent to Governor Patrick later today.
GIC Plan Adds 2,300 For FY15
JUNE 13, 2014: At its monthly meeting held today, the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC) announced that enrollment in the retiree-pay-all dental program increased by some 2,300 retirees for Fiscal Year 2015, which begins July 1.
Now entering its 11th year of existence, the retiree dental program is not only a great success story for the GIC, but also for our Association. The program was created at the behest of our Association in 2003 and has grown to nearly 27,000 enrollees.
Insurance Moratorium Pending
JUNE 6, 2014: Following the passage of the Fiscal Year 2015 budget in both the House and Senate, legislative conferees are now negotiating a final unified state budget that will likely receive final approval in late June or early July.
Insurance Moratorium Pending
MAY 20, 2014: State Senators will begin debate on the FY15 budget beginning Wednesday morning. The debate, which is expected to last at least three days, will determine the Senate’s version of the state budget for the coming year.
Of utmost importance to our Association is amendment #89, filed by Senator Ken Donnelly (D-Arlington). Senators McGee, Lewis, Moore, Keenan and DiDomenico have signed onto the amendment as cosponsors.
MAY 2014 VOICE: Members, who are state and municipal retirees receiving their health insurance through the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC), received welcome good news in March – health insurance premiums for FY15 will remain largely unchanged.
Association Seeks Two-Year Exentention On Retiree Premium Percentages
MAY 2014 VOICE: For the past three years, retired teachers and municipal workers have been protected from unfair increases in health insurance premium contribution percentages. Alarmingly, the legal protection expires on July 1, 2014!
Association officials are calling on the legislature to extend the retiree protection for two-years, through July 1, 2016.