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Employees Air Insurance Concerns

Bushnell switched health insurance plans last year to lower costs. Instead, it raised the hackles of employees.

The two sides this week. Fifteen employees submitted their complaints and questions in writing.

Their biggest complaint was the deductible. It increased $400 from the old plan to $1,900.

The employees had a number of other complaints. They told the city co-pays are often more than the $20 in the policies. They did not realize the city had dropped coverage for dependents. One employee learned her husband was not covered by life insurance only after he passed away.

Other complaints were complicated paperwork and the reduction in the value of the life insurance policy from $20,000 to $14,000 at age 65.

Mayor Steve Russell said the city is looking into the incident.

He said, “We highlighted the comments throughout the committee meeting of what needs to be investigated. We'll contact the agent and see if we can get some lower premiums, see what the cost is, see if it's something we can afford to do.”

Russell said the city will have to act quickly. The current plan runs through April 30th.

The city switched from a Health Management Organization to a Preferred Provider Organization last year in an effort to save money Alderman Dave Norton said the potential savings to the city is $117,000 a year.