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City eyes saving $100K on insurance

Posted on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 at 11:38 am

In what became a heated work session Thursday, the Fayetteville Board of Mayor and Aldermen decided to open up the bidding process on its employee health insurance, and when those bids come in, they’ll be weighed against plans available through the state.

If the city were to opt to go with the state, it would realize a savings of between $100,000 and $125,000 in the coming year, according to projections. At the same time, employees’ deductibles would be lowered tremendously, but their overall out-of-pocket expense would increase and in some cases substantially. Premiums for all but eight of the city’s 102 employees would decrease.

Making officials’ decision more difficult was the fact that the city’s current agent, Dixie Smith Insurance, isn’t able to provide new proposals through its provider, Blue Cross Blue Shield, until October. Additionally, officials said, other local agencies have voiced concern that they haven’t been given an opportunity to bid for the city’s health insurance business.

With Oct. 2 set as the deadline for accepting insurance proposals for 2018, the City Board will have to make a decision next month.

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