EATON — Preble County Commissioners will be clarifying the county insurance policy following a “mix up” with an employee.
During a meeting on Monday, March 4, Administrative Assistant Julie Miller discussed an issue recently brought to her attention.
An employee who was planning on removing his wife from the policy the middle of last year was advised to keep her on the policy until open enrollment. This employee was told, since his wife would not be on the policy in 2019, she did not have to complete the 600 points requirement to receive a discounted wellness rate.
He completed his points for the wellness rate and expected the discounted price.
However, when Miller received the report, she saw his wife did not complete the requirements and offered them the standard rate. The Wellness Committee reported back to Miller and explained the situation.
“Where I have a problem with this is, we’re setting precedent and since I’ve been in this seat we talk about setting precedent. When I look at the situation and who it is, I feel like we need to be very careful, because it looks like favoritism,” Commissioner Creech said.
“When I looked into this with the Wellness Committee in December — I’m only into this for two and a half months — but regardless, when I read this, it is not clearly defined. There is nothing in anything ever said about any variations. The only thing the requirements talk about is if you are going to be on insurance. There is nothing that says what is going to happen if you go off halfway through,” Miller said.
“That is where my problem is. There is too much gray area and with insurance I don’t think you should have a lot of gray, because of issues like this.”
Commissioner Denise Robertson added, they are currently accumulating wellness points for the next year and if she knew she wasn’t going to be on the insurance in the future, she wouldn’t think to complete the point requirements.
“This is where we probably need, at sometime down the road, [a human resources contact] — very few places with over 200 employees don’t have human resources. If we had a go to person or office — we are dealing with way too much to not have an HR contact or office. I think, in the future, we need to look at adding that,” Creech said.
Miller agreed and stated, she would support an HR contact 100 percent.
“We should have a Payroll HR person. That should be in the payroll department,” Robertson said.
Creech added, they need to be following the written procedure and if there is “gray area” it needs to be clarified.
“[The employee] met the requirement of the tier he is going to, you just have to write that down somewhere,” Robertson said.
Miller added, the board will eventually have to approve the clarification.
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH