Veterans life insurance

GBRC approves lower insurance premiums

At a time when the costs of so many things are rising, the Great Bend Recreation Commission will actually see a significant decrease in the costs of a position over the coming year. At its monthly meeting on Monday, the board approved a reduction in the commission’s commercial liability premiums and employee health and dental insurance premiums.

The board approved renewal of the commission’s commercial liability insurance plan through Conrade Insurance Group of Newton, representing Cincinnati Insurance Company, an insurance provider that has an A+ or better rating for the provision of commercial liability insurance. The annual premium, effective May 1, 2022, is $44,961. The bonus for the previous year was just over $47,000.

The annual premium covers property, general liability, commercial auto, crime, contractors equipment, electronic data processing equipment, terrorism, management liability (directors and officers), which covers board members and staff, and workers’ compensation. The commission also has a separate liability policy for the GBRC Foundation, for errors and omissions of public officials, for an annual premium of $799.

Currently, the commission is in its third year of a four-year bundle contract with the company. Executive Director Diann Henderson said bonuses are bundled together to provide cost savings.

Renewal of health insurance

The board also approved the renewal of the commission’s health insurance benefit plan through Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas, effective July 1, 2022, with a 12% reduction in premiums from the last year.

Effective July 1, the monthly premium will be $11,496.40, down from $13,126.36 a year earlier. The cost includes $11,188.07 for health insurance plus $388.07 per month for dental care, which is an add-on to the plan.

Henderson said the commission’s health insurance plan is a non-grandfathered plan in the National Small Business Pool, which complies with the provisions of the Affordable Care Act. The pool includes high to low risk for small businesses and individuals.

The GBRC pays the full employee share of the premium for all qualifying employees, plus a share of dependent care insurance chosen by the employee. The package with BCBS also includes term life, short-term disability, and voluntary term life insurance packages.

The commission’s health insurance premium is calculated based on the age of plan participants, as well as the profitability of the pool in which the commission sits, rather than claims filed.

In response to a question from council member Randy Goering, Henderson told the council that among qualified employees, the commission participates 100% in the employee health plan.

Board chair Andrea Bauer said this step is important to finding and retaining quality employees.

“In recent years, we have worked a lot on salaries, I have the impression that the quality of services is just as important. So it’s good. We want to keep good people here,” Bauer said.