State News

Perdue signs State Health Plan bailout

Posted April 23, 2009
Updated April 24, 2009

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— Gov. Beverly Perdue signed into law the Legislature's $675 million-plus bailout of the state employee health insurance plan.

Perdue said Thursday the deal is a necessary short-term step to continue paying health care bills for 667,000 state employees, retirees, teachers and their dependents.

"This cannot be permanent policy," Perdue said in a statement. "The General Assembly must continue working on a long-term solution."

The compromise passed by lawmakers Wednesday will raise deductibles and most copays, increase premiums for dependent care coverage by 8.9 percent annually, and cuts benefits for people who smoke or are obese. Employees continue to pay no premium for their own coverage.

The State Employees Association of North Carolina opposed the final plan because it said it would cost workers hundreds of dollars of additional out-of-pocket costs.

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  • Grace0107 Apr 24, 2009

    As a state employee, it is great to have health insurance for free for yourself, but the kicker is...most are married w/ dependants, and I can tell you that the price to add a spouse is astronomial...it would make your head spin! It is not an option of weather to add a dependant, but for some a necessity! So yes, when the already high price is raised, it is human to get upset about it, just as you would in your job.

  • ncborn2 Apr 24, 2009

    There are some individuals who think the people who work for the state of NC do not pay taxes. Well, guess what, the employees for the state of NC do. Not only are they paying taxes to support the state of NC, they are also paying for goods and services provided by the private sector which in turn help to pay their employees health benefits, pay increases, incentives, etc. I am just tired of hearing that the people that work for the state of NC do not deserve incentives, good health insurance, pay increases, etc just like the private sector, the legislative peronnel, and the teachers.

  • FoxtrotUniformCharlieKiloakaCALM Apr 24, 2009

    i love it when people act like teachers have it easy lol... really amusing. because you know, it's the teachers fault when a student fails. not because the student refuses to study the parents refuse to make them do homework... NO! couldn't be that!!!

  • Bendal1 Apr 24, 2009

    Now that the state has opened the door to start charging certain groups more for their health insurance, who's next?

    Those who drink alcohol/beer? They could get a DUI or hurt someone else, or themselves. Raise their premiums!

    Children with congenital health issues? Autism, diabetes, how about birth defects? Those cost the state more too; raise those premiums!

    How about if you go skydiving, fly a private plane, deep sea dive, or just go skiing? All risky activities that can end up costing the state more money. Raise their premiums!

    What if you've got high blood pressure? One can have it without being overweight. Obviously risky; raise those premiums!

    Family have a history of cancer? Raise their premiums!

    Now the big one; did the legislators write an 'out' in that law that exempted them? They've got the same health insurance as the other state employees. Lots of fat legislators!

  • readerman Apr 23, 2009

    To squeeze state employees while cutting the state corporate income tax is just another example of the rich getting bailed out while the common man pays. Same old story of government corruption.

  • knightec75 Apr 23, 2009

    It will be interesting how the new State Health Plan will get the information about an employee that's overweight and/or a smoker. The State Health plan better be sure that their data integrity system is up to par. You don't want to end up with higher 70/30 plan because they had the wrong information.

  • carolinagirl20 Apr 23, 2009

    Currently a state employee pays $0 for health insurance and with the new bill he/she will still pay $0. The ones that will see an increase will be dependents (spouse and children). If you do not like the price then shop around and pay a less amount. By shopping around you aren’t going to find a plan that compares to what you have because it is such a rich plan. Go compare apples to apples and truly see how much it will cost for your type of coverage.
    I do not understand why state employees are complaining about FREE INSURANCE!!! Maybe the state doesn’t see a need to give raises when the insurance premium for employees is not increasing? It is NC tax payers that fund the state employees’ insurance yet all they do is complain that their husband/wife or child/ren will need to pay higher premiums. I wish I could send my tax dollars to pay for an uninsured’s insurance;
    I am sure he or she will be more grateful than the state employees seem to be!

  • allanonofnc Apr 23, 2009

    I wish that the media would not call this a bailout. The problem was mismanagement and lack of oversight that lead to this. The employees did nothing wrong but once again, we bear the financial costs of fixing the politicians problems. I mean, how is being fired from your last two jobs, including the one that you are hired back for, qualify you for the position?

  • westral Apr 23, 2009

    The increases in deductibles and co-pays are highway robbery. I remember when my grandfather used to work for the state many years ago. All my life, growing up, I used to hear how great it was to work for the state, and how great the benefits were. How that has changed so so much. It is almost a chore now to work for the state government.

  • whatelseisnew Apr 23, 2009

    This is one of the reasons you do not want Government Health Insurance. This is typical of the extremist Democrats to single out groups of people that they feel they can discriminate against and harm them. The next step of course will be denial of health care. Imagine if they had said, well we need to charge Blacks more or we need to charge Hispanics more. Government sanctioned bigotry and discrimination is what this is. It will be worse at the Federal level. Smokers in particular are being harmed. They are being taxed to pay for the health insurance of other people. Point in fact their health insurance ought to be free.

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