Rising medical insurance costs push La Quinta’s benefit ceiling up


La Quinta is increasing its monthly employee benefit cap to just over $ 90 per worker to meet rising medical insurance rates.

The monthly cap is currently $ 1,742 per employee and will increase to $ 1,832.01 effective January 1, for a total increase of $ 98,280 for the year.

The money will come from the city’s contingency fund for staffing.

The increase in the benefit cap, totaling $ 98, was unanimously approved by city council on Tuesday, first behind closed doors and then in open session under two elements of the consent schedule – A grouping of items of a routine nature that can be approved together in a single motion. .

The CalPERS Board of Directors sets medical rates annually for all cities in California. Staff just learned of the new rates in July, which is the main reason for the increased cap, said community resources director Chris Escobedo.

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The cost of the city-sponsored Anthem Select HMO health plan will increase by $ 96.89 per month – from $ 1,661.66 to $ 1,758.85 – per employee, Escobedo said.

At the same time, the cost per employee of dental coverage will drop by almost $ 10 per month, from $ 53.51 to $ 44.98. Vision coverage also decreases slightly from $ 23.80 to $ 22.68 per employee, while life insurance increases from $ 2.90 to $ 5.50.

The board also approved Keenan and Associates as an employee benefits broker and advisory service on Tuesday as part of the consent schedule. There is no direct cost to the city, as Keenan is compensated by commissions from insurance companies, said human resources analyst Carla Triplett.

It is thanks to Keenan that employees see a lower cost for dental and vision coverage, otherwise the cost of the health cap would have been higher at $ 1,839.06 per month, per employee, rather than the 1,832.01 $ approved by the board, Escobedo said.

Desert Sun reporter Sherry Barkas covers the towns of La Quinta, Indian Wells, Rancho Mirage and Palm Desert. She can be contacted at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @TDSsherryBarkas

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