Legislative Session Update from HR

A Message from the USF Division of Human Resources to All USF Employees:

 

As you know, USF closely monitors all proposals discussed during the Legislative Session each year that could potentially impact our employees. After much debate and speculation as to changes that the Legislature might make to employee pay, benefits and retirement, in the end few changes were passed by the Legislature. 

 

Most importantly, the Legislature passed no mandated or across-the-board pay cuts for state university employees for the 2010-11 fiscal year. However, late on Friday afternoon, Governor Crist signed into law the following decisions or changes to university employee benefits, which we wanted to make each of you aware of.

 

Effective July 1, 2010:

 

Employees in the “Spouse Program” for health insurance coverage will be required to pay $15 per month for coverage.

 

State agencies can no longer use state funds to pay attorneys’ Bar dues.

 

Effective January 1, 2011:

 

Employees’ health insurance monthly premiums will remain at the same cost as in 2010 – $180 for family coverage and $50 for single coverage. Although overall health insurance premium costs will increase next year, the state will cover the entire cost of the increase.

 

The state will pay the full premium amount for a $25,000 life insurance policy for each state employee. PPO health insurance plan providers will be required to recognize mammograms as preventative benefits.

 

HMO health insurance plan co-pays will increase from $15 to $20 for primary care visits and from $25 to $40 for specialty care visits.

 

HMO and PPO health insurance plan co-pays for urgent care visits will increase from $15 to $25 and co-pays for emergency room visits will increase from $50 to $100.

 

Pharmacy co-pays will be increased or decreased as follows:

 

Generic drug with card – Decreased from $10 to $7.

 

Preferred brand name drug with card – Increased from $25 to $30.

 

Non-preferred brand name drug with card – Increased from $40 to $50.

 

Generic mail order drug – Decreased from $20 to $14.

 

Preferred brand name mail order drug – Increased from $50 to $60.

 

Non-preferred brand name mail order drug – Increased from $80 to $100.

 

Additionally, many of you have heard or read about a change passed by the Legislature to the Deferred Retirement Option Program (DROP), which would have lowered the guaranteed interest rate paid on money accumulating in employees’ DROP accounts from 6.5% per year to 3% per year, effective July 1, 2010. The bill that would have made this change was vetoed by Governor Crist on Friday. Therefore, there will be no change to the DROP program or its guaranteed interest rate. Employees should not feel compelled to rush to make any DROP elections, as there will be no change to the program on July 1. No other changes to state retirement programs passed the Legislature during the 2010 Legislative Session.

 

If you have any questions or concerns about any of your employee benefits or how the changes outlined above may impact you or your dependents, your Division of Human Resources is here to assist you. If you are on the Tampa Campus, you may locate the appropriate HR Service Center contact for your college or division here. If you are on a regional campus, you may contact your local HR Department directly.

 

Finally, many of you with children in the K-12 school system have inquired as to what changes were made to the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program that will take effect with the High School Class of 2011. Click here to view a summary of those changes as well, which were signed into law by Governor Crist on Friday.

 

Respectfully,

 

Sandy Lovins

Vice President

Administrative Services

Business & Finance Division

 

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