By: James Pruitt
THE VILLAGE REPORTER
Williams County employees are going to have more choices for various types of supplemental insurance.
The Board of County Commissioners called department heads and elected officials in for a special meeting Aug. 4 to talk about the plans. The plans offer significant savings to employees who opt for the added coverage.
Commissioner Lewis Hilkert said with open enrollment beginning in October, employees would be getting information beginning next month to see if their coverage matches their needs.
Mike Kurivial of First Insurance and Investment and Julie Oxender of Advance Group, spoke for a few minutes to the assembled officials. The announcement was meant to get the department heads thinking about bringing up the issue to their staffs.
The plans will cover accidents, critical illnesses, cancer and life insurance. Since this is a new signup, there are no conditions to be met.
“It’s important to share with your employees,” Oxender said. “This won’t happen next year.”
A change in the law regarding taxing managed care organizations will mean less money for the county and the state.
Williams County Auditor Julie Beagle informed a gathering of department heads about the change and the expected loss of revenue. The news comes as the departments begin to work on their budgets for 2017.
The state was forced to make the change after a decision by federal regulators.
As a result, the state plans to lose $1.1 billion. The county will lose $133,000 this year and more than $400,000 next year, Beagle said.
The impact on the General Fund will be significant as it is already depleted by the courthouse roof project, she said.
In other news
Assistant County Clerk Robin Kemp updated the department heads on the Wellness Program.
Participating employees can earn points toward a $150 gift card by getting some basic health tests performed.
The department heads were introduced to the county’s new IT supervisor Jeremy Suffel.
Suffel’s job will be to operate a help desk for departments covered by the general fund. He will also look at the countywide system and make improvements.
“Williams County is more complex than Fulton County,” Suffel said. “Williams County is not in that bad of shape as I thought.”
Suffel will set up a web-based form for people to submit service requests. This will not require him to take phone calls, freeing him up to get more work done.
He may be available to work on non-general fund agencies at $65 an hour, Commission President Brian Davis said.
James Pruitt may be reached at