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Town, employee unions agree to health insurance changes

BRATTLEBORO—The Selectboard agreed to make an addendum to Brattleboro’s municipal health care plan during a short special meeting last Tuesday.

As of Jan. 1, 2011, the town will adopt the High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) for the remainder of union contracts. The town will pay 100 percent of the new plan’s premium and contribute one-half of the annual deductible into a health savings account. The HDHP replaces the town’s current Open Access Plus Health Plan.

The change will affect union and non-union employees alike.

Town Manager Barbara Sondag told Selectboard members this change would save the town money in 2011 and an estimated $100,000 to $200,000 in 2012.

The town and the three unions representing town employees reached a tentative agreement prior to the Selectboard’s affirmative vote.

Brattleboro gets its insurance through the Vermont League of Cities and Towns’ Health Trust, which buys group medical insurance through CIGNA. 

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Originally published in The Commons issue #81 (Wednesday, December 29, 2010).

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