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December 11, 2017

12/7/2017 10:57:00 AM
Byron health insurance costs and home permit numbers both up

By Gretta Becay

Byron city council members discussed at length the cost of health insurance coverage for city employees, at their regular meeting on Nov. 28.

This year, the city received notification that health insurance costs for city staff members would go up by almost 30 percent.

City Administrator Mary Blair-Hoeft sought quotes from other companies to determine if cheaper coverage is available. Quotes came in higher than the one the city had received from its present company, Southeast Service Cooperative.

To help mitigate the increase, city staff members were asked if they'd like to increase the deductible as a way to keep the premium costs down.

Staff members agreed and that is what the city will do next year.

Deductibles will increase to $2,700 for singles and $5,400 for families. Singles will pay five percent of the premium and families will pay 25 percent. Both singles and families would pay half of their deductibles.

The city picks up the remainder of the costs.

Mayor Daryl Glassmaker commented that staff members were all approached and all agreed to the increases. Council member Steven Cook concurred saying that the city has done its due diligence and talked to personnel.

"Every year health insurance costs will go up," he noted.

Council members also approved a raise for John Bausman earlier than required by union contract. Bausman was promoted to lead foreman in May and his former position - that of lead water - was not filled. Bausman has done both jobs since then and documentation provided to the council members noted, "We want to keep team members who are willing to go the extra mile for no guaranteed wage increase."

Council members agreed the personnel committee might now select the best-qualified candidate for the position of lead water.

Read the rest of the story in the print edition of the Star Herald.

Claremont Service

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