Rock Island County Human Resources Committee meets to discuss finances
The Rock Island County Human Resources Committee met Tuesday, July 12.
Here are the meeting minutes as provided by the Rock Island County Human Resources Committee:
Human Resources Committee Minutes Tuesday July 12, 2016 10:00 am
The Human Resources Committee of the Rock Island County Board met at the above date and time in the Conference Room of the Administration Office on the second floor of the County Building, 1504 Third Ave, Rock Island, IL. Chair Nick Camlin called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. Minutes as follows:
1) Call to order and roll call
Committee members present: Nick Camlin, Ginny Shelton, Larry Burns, Kim Callaway- Thompson, Chris Filbert, Rod Simmer (arrived at 10:02), Kai Swanson
Committee members absent: None
Others present: Ed Langdon, Dave Ross, Sylvia Gomez, Hayleigh Covella, Kenneth Maranda, April Palmer, Louisa Ewert
2) Approval of the minutes from the June 14, 2016 meeting
Motion to approve: Chris Filbert 2nd: Kim Callaway-Thompson Voice vote Motion carried
3) Public Comments
There were no public comments.
4) Consider approval of claims
Motion to approve claims and TDs: Larry Burns 2nd: Kai Swanson Voice vote Motion carried
5) Consider approval of treasurer’s disbursements (TDs)
Item 5 was approved as part of Item 4.
6) Reports to the Committee
a) Condition of Funds – Ms. PalmerMs. Palmer presented two of her three standard reports.
On the trial balance or budgetary standings, all of those are good and no resolutions were just approved, so that’s wonderful. For the fund balance, the current fund balance for the General Fund compared to last year as of June 30 is up $1 million. Revenue is up and expenses are down, amazingly, another $300,000 for the first seven months of this fiscal year so far. Things are going well as far as that is concerned. Employee health benefits are getting much healthier compared to last year as well. The current fund balance is also quite a bit higher. This year, it is up a little bit in revenues, but also quite a bit up in expenses. She thinks that just occurred. There were a couple of larger expense weeks, unfortunately, but it’s still very healthy and moving in the right direction as a whole.
Ms. Palmer reported that today’s General Fund cash balance didn’t change from yesterday. It’s still $1,589,500.
Mr. Simmer is present.
Ms. Palmer noted that the cash balance page will be forthcoming in via email or in the mailboxes as soon as she can complete those. State of Illinois payments had another month collected. The standard Budget by Organization report is also in the packet.
Mr. Swanson noticed on the trial balance page that FICA and Liability Insurance are much more robust this year than last year. He asked if that is more of a function of claims history or if they’re starting to see the impact of additional revenue. Ms. Palmer explained that they just got the first distribution, which is about a third, and that did boost those up because they took over Hope Creek’s employees and all those other funds. Ms. Swanson said it’s the additional revenue, then. Ms. Palmer confirmed and noted that they did pay the whole loan of the $524,000 back to working cash. That was in FICA.
b) Health Insurance Planning Committee – Mr. Swanson
Mr. Swanson noted that Brooke Hendrickx is an outstanding chair for the Health Insurance Planning Committee; he’s just her co-chair. The committee is zeroing in on some changes in the health plan because a fairly popular option, the Premier Plan, will no longer be on the table because the providers are not allowing that. They have to make some changes and are taking advantage of that opportunity to create some additional savings. Depending on how things break, they could see a 6% savings structurally. That gets eaten up by inherent inflation in health insurance. They’re keeping an eye on that. Every month, they get a cross-fund report which oversimplifies and gives them a snapshot of the surplus. Mr. Swanson explained that several years ago, the surplus was eaten away and employees found premiums going through the roof. They want to avoid that. After a few months of really healthy results and good outcomes, they just saw a dip in it. It’s at $1.87 million. If it goes below $1.5 million, that’s the cautionary, yellow light zone. At that point, the committee would.because the committee is totally fine with the proposed 2% increase from the county even though they expect a 6% increase in healthcare costs, but this number is what they look at. This will be the barometer. If it goes below $1 million, the county may be approached to raise that investment. As long as it stays above $1.5, it’s in the green zone.
Mr. Camlin noted that the 2% is the county’s contribution. He asked what the increase would be from employees. Mr. Swanson said 2%. They agreed to mirror. In future years, they’re budgeting 4% as a planning goal. Mr. Camlin said that internal cost savings, structural cost savings, will not offset all of the increase. He asked if they are looking at actually 6% from both parties or in aggregate. Mr. Swanson explained that they are trying to structure it such based on claims experience. They think they can put pressure on that to be reduced and save money, but if a couple of people have severe illnesses that can go away. They can’t bank on that. Ms. Shelton said that’s what happened a couple of years ago. Mr. Swanson said a lot of things can happen.
c) Human Resources Department – Mr. Clyde
Ms. Gomez presented the monthly HR report for Mr. Clyde. She provided an update on HR staffing. The HR Assistant at Hope Creek started today. She’s very excited to get started. One of biggest projects she has coming in is getting a job fair scheduled. Historically, when they get the hype out there they do get a lot more interest. They’re needing to focus on recruiting, most definitely.
They are scheduling interviews at the end of this week for the HR Generalist. To date, they haven’t gotten as much excitement as they were hoping for. They did get some good candidates. HDG will play heavily in the initial screening. A combination of HDG and internal staff, probably Mr. Clyde, will be part of the final decision and interviewing.
As far as anything else, Ms. Gomez hopes her transition over here will be able to be toward the end of July as far as coming on full-time. She’s looking forward to that.
d) Negotiating Committee
Mr. Maranda noted that they’re waiting for mediation on the one.
Mr. Camlin noted that next month, VIPCO and someone associated with the Chamber will each present on this hot topic of employee health and wellness for about 10 minutes each.
Mr. Simmer noted that he was looking at the State of Illinois payments and asked if they are not paying any more from February and March of 2015 for the Court Interpreter and the Assistant State’s Attorney. Ms. Palmer said she was trying to track down who does the State’s Attorney billing. Ms. Bernard and Mr. McGehee’s office were going to look into that. As far as the Court Interpreter, it may be because she hasn’t had qualifying cases where they’ve had to bring in that type of interpreter. There’s been nothing to ask for reimbursement for. She had big cases last year and that’s why they brought in money. That is on case-by-case basis.
Mr. Simmer asked Mr. Swanson why they stopped that Premier thing. He noted that it ties into the old health and welfare thing. He knows that Trinity Unity Point has, for all the overweight people, they ridiculously increased their premiums even though claims were down. He asked what their scam or deal is on this and noted he doesn’t trust any insurance companies. Mr. Swanson said he shares Mr. Simmer’s circumspect attitude. He doesn’t know what’s behind it, but what they told the committee is that it’s part of a national trend. They’re moving away from these things. He thinks this has gone on in healthcare as long as he’s paid attention. It’s the same car with a different paint job. They’re moving on something where it’s preferential to migrate people to Unity Point. The old one was Genesis. Most people’s health plans in 20 years have zoomed back and forth because one has a better deal than the other. Mr. Swanson explained that what should stay the same is that there would still be a preferential option where if you go through, say, biometrics screening which saves money if they detect something that someone should be working on. It reduces claims over time, but the motivation for doing it, he’s not exactly sure. That is at the UHC level. The consultants from Benefits Staff have done a really good job of giving them options of a couple of other providers to look at. It’s made all of the county’s suitors ratchet down their cost structures, so the committee thinks they can come up with something that will give employees the level of service they’re accustomed to, but bring costs down. Mr. Simmer noted that cost drives insurance companies all the time, but his concern is when they switch back and forth like that, he as a physician, and as an individual that has had to switch doctors all the time, that drives him insane. Mr. Swanson said that primary providers probably won’t change. Mr. Simmer said from Genesis to Unity Point, it has to change. Mr. Swanson explained that he understands that the impact would be more that you wouldn’t necessarily change primary providers, but if your primary provider says you need to have x operation done, your savings are by going to Unity Point for inpatient stuff. Ms. Shelton noted that most of these doctors are all connected. Your primary provider has as surgeon he works with.
Mr. Swanson explained that they talked about that with employees on the committee. Each one represents a different bargaining unit or unit of county employees and most had experiences where they were able to talk to their doctor under the old plan. They were steering people toward Genesis. If your primary said you need a splenectomy at Trinity and your plan says Genesis, then they move you over there to Genesis. It shouldn’t prompt a lot of people changing their primary providers. That’s what they’re saying. Mr. Simmer asked Mr. Swanson to keep an eye on that. It’s insane on those doctors and on insurance for his kids and everything else. His primary has been ousted because he’s Genesis. The savings may be there, but he asked Mr. Swanson to make sure the county employees understand that they can save money or keep the people they have. He has paid more to keep his people. Mr. Swanson said he’s proud of the members of the committee who really keep an eye on things for their fellow colleagues.
Ms. Callaway-Thompson noted that Mr. Camlin referenced the employee health and wellness program and the VIPCO presentation. She had the opportunity a few weeks ago to meet with Teresa Jones and encouraged her to get on the agenda for HR and to contact Mr. Swanson and see if she can possibly meet with the health insurance planning committee. Mr. Swanson said he appreciates that, but they’re not interested at this point. Ms. Callaway-Thompson asked if Mr. Swanson has heard the presentation at all. She cautioned that it took a little more than ten minutes, but it seemed to be very well informed. Mr. Swanson said, in all candor, a lot of HR professionals are not very thrilled because they are commission-based salespeople and that’s a lot of pressure on HR staff and their colleagues, “You need to sign up for this and you need to sign up for this.” Since they represent this other company, and he doesn’t know if this is specific to VIPCO or endemic to this sector, but since they’re commission-based pay, they’re high pressure and the committee is not interested at this point. They don’t see the cost benefit at this point. Ms. Callaway- Thompson asked if they have heard the presentation. Mr. Swanson said no, but there’s not an appetite for it now. They’re going to be making a big change this year because of the shift away from the select plan. They’re cognizant of wanting to. Mr. Swanson said if Ms. Callaway-Thompson wants more information, he encourages her to talk to Ms. Hendrickx at the Health Department. Down the road, they want to do other things like offering an HSA option with a high deductible. They want to meet the pace of change a year at a time. Ms. Callaway-Thompson said that her thing is that the kind of cost savings that was presented during that presentation is well worth considering. Sometimes she thinks things that sound too good to be true are, but she guesses she’s just not sure. Mr. Swanson said it sounds pretty good, but it’s not exactly the type of wellness program the committee is interested in at this time. Mr. Camlin said they’ll hear them out. He did allot 10 minutes for them last month, but they did not respond to that invitation. Ten minutes was given and then competitors asked for the same opportunity.
Meeting adjourned at 10:18 a.m. by Chair Nick Camlin
Future scheduled meetings on August 9, September 13, October 11, and November 9
Organizations in this Story
504 3rd Ave
Rock Island, IL 61201