The Hastings City Council Monday approved the city’s PA 202 Corrective Action Plan to do with retiree’s health care benefits. City Manager Jeff Mansfield said despite changes to the benefits in past years, the city was found to not be in compliance with the state’s recently established limits on the amount of unfunded liability and payments that municipalities are allowed to make related to health care benefits for retirees.
The city’s conversion to Blue Care Network and Blue Care Network Advantage Plans for eligible retirees will bring the City into compliance with the state’s standards.
However, Mansfield said that three retirees families moved out of the area and can’t find a primary care physician within a reasonable driving distance who accepts Blue Cross. A viable solution was for those retiree to buy their own coverage, paid for by the “opt out stipend” for coverage recommended by the Municipal Employee’s Retirement System Health Care Exchange, he said.
“We don’t know the nuances in this, and we need time to figure it out,” he said. “We are confident that we can work with these retirees to resolve this matter – but it may take a few months to do so.”
in the meantime, the council agreed to let those few retirees stay on the older plans for one more year while it gets sorted out.
In other business, the council approved a request from Rusty Blakely to host the 1st annual Wendy Jo Blakely Je t’amie 5K fund run on May 18, 2019 in Hastings. Blakely’s wife Wendy died from pancreatic cancer this year; he is raising money for pancreatic cancer research at John Hopkins Hospital. For more, visit https://mypinkheart.com/.
The Jingle & Mingle Committee was granted permission to present its fourth annual Christmas event, "Hastings Jingle & Mingle" Nov. 30 -Dec. 2.
And, a workshop was tentatively set for Nov. 26 at 6 p.m. to receive the 2017/2018 audit report from Rehmann.