Federal funds are being withheld from Wisconsin school districts that dropped a health insurer connected with the state’s largest teachers union. Now, the WEA Trust is asking a federal court to rule that its move is okay. The WEA Trust received $18-million from the government’s Early Retiree Re-insurance Program. It’s designed to off-set the costs of providing insurance for early retirees. School officials who’ve dropped the WEA Trust say the money belongs to all public districts – and at least 14 of them are reportedly considering lawsuits to get a share of that funding. The WEA Trust told school systems that the funds would be given out as premium credits – thus forcing them to stay on with the insurance firm to get the money. But many districts have opted for cheaper plans as a result of the state law which took away much of the teachers’ unions’ bargaining powers. One superintendent, Glenn Schilling of Hartland-Lakeside, said the district and its law firm will decide by Friday whether to proceed with a lawsuit.
This money is owed to the school districts and the fact WEA Trust is holding it hostage is very troubling. Perhaps this is another example of how it really isn’t all about the children for leadership of public union entities.
The North Fond du Lac School District is taking the lead when it comes to saving money on employee health insurance costs.
A new health insurance plan put in place will save the district more than a quarter million dollars next year.
The Board of Education on Monday approved a modified plan with the Wisconsin Education Association Trust that would retain the same physicians and network.
The WEA Trust lowered premiums for next year with the promise the school’s wellness will be monitored to ensure that claims don’t outrun premiums.
Working with consultants Key Benefits Concepts, an insurance committee comprised of administrators, teachers and secretaries sought competitive bids from six insurance carriers, said Superintendent Aaron Sadoff.
“This plan will yield the district significant savings, continue great coverage for our educators and associates and help to transition our district’s view of insurance, usage and wellness initiatives,” he said.
Based on 44 single and 96 family plan enrollments, insurance costs will total $1.89 million this year, $1.6 million in 2012 and $1.8 million in 2013. Combined savings to the district for 2012 and 2013 will equal $339,484.
Further evidence that Wisconsinites should REFUSE to sign a recall petition. The reforms are working.