The Vermont Statutes Online
The statutes were updated in November, 2018, and contain all actions of the
2018 legislative session.
§ 631. Group insurance for State employees; salary deductions for insurance, savings plans, and credit unions
(a)(1) The Secretary of Administration may contract on behalf of the State with any insurance company or nonprofit association doing business in this State to secure the benefits of franchise or group insurance. Beginning July 1, 1978, the terms of coverage under the policy shall be determined under section 904 of this title, but it may include:
(A) life, disability, health, and accident insurance and benefits for any class or classes of State employees; and
(B) hospital, surgical, and medical benefits for any class or classes of State employees or for those employees and any class or classes of their dependents.
(2)(A)(i) As used in this section, the term "employees" includes any class or classes of elected or appointed officials, State's Attorneys, sheriffs, employees of State's Attorneys' offices whose compensation is administered through the State of Vermont payroll system, except contractual and temporary employees, and deputy sheriffs paid by the State of Vermont pursuant to 24 V.S.A. § 290(b). The term "employees" shall not include members of the General Assembly as such, any person rendering service on a retainer or fee basis, members of boards or commissions, or persons other than employees of the Vermont Historical Society, the Vermont Film Corporation, the Vermont State Employees' Credit Union, Vermont State Employees' Association, and the Vermont Council on the Arts, whose compensation for service is not paid from the State Treasury, or any elected or appointed official unless the official is actively engaged in and devoting substantially full-time to the conduct of the business of his or her public office.
(ii) For purposes of group hospital-surgical-medical expense insurance, the term "employees" shall include employees as defined in subdivision (i) of this subdivision (2)(A) and former employees as defined in this subdivision who are retired and are receiving a retirement allowance from the Vermont State Retirement System or the State Teachers' Retirement System of Vermont and, for the purposes of group life insurance only, are retired on or after July 1, 1961, and have completed 20 creditable years of service with the State before their retirement dates and are insured for group life insurance on their retirement dates.
(iii) For purposes of group hospital-surgical-medical expense insurance only, the term "employees" shall include employees as defined in subdivision (i) of this subdivision (2)(A) and employees who are receiving a retirement allowance based upon their employment with the Vermont State Employees' Association, the Vermont State Employees' Credit Union, the Vermont Council on the Arts, as long as they are covered as active employees on their retirement date, and:
(I) they have at least 20 years of service with that employer; or
(II) have attained 62 years of age, and have at least 15 years of service with that employer.
(B) The premiums for extending insurance coverage to employees shall be paid in full by the Vermont Historical Society, the Vermont Film Corporation, the Vermont State Employees' Association, the Vermont State Employees' Credit Union, the Vermont Council on the Arts, or their respective retirees. Nothing herein creates a legal obligation on the part of the State of Vermont to pay any portion of the premiums required to extend insurance coverage to this group of employees.
(3) The term "dependents" shall include only an employee's spouse, or an employee's unmarried child. However, no person may be covered both as an employee and as a dependent, and no person may be considered as a dependent of more than one employee. The term "child" shall in addition to an employee's own or lawfully adopted children, include such stepchildren, foster children, children under adoptive supervisory placement, and other children as depend upon the employee for support and maintenance.
(4), (5) [Repealed.]
(6) The State Treasurer and Commissioner of Human Resources, with the approval of the Governor, shall deduct from a State employee's compensation such amounts for group insurance or assessments for benefits for dependents as defined in subdivision (3) of this subsection when so requested by the employee and shall apply the same forthwith to the cost of such benefits.
(7) The State Treasurer and the Commissioner of Human Resources, with the consent of the Governor, shall deduct from any State employee's compensation such amounts as the employee may request for U.S. savings bonds, Vermont State Employees' Credit Union, any employee organization certified by the State Labor Relations Board as of July 1, 1977 so long as the employee organization retains that certification, or for charitable pledges or for other purposes as determined by the Governor or through collective bargaining and shall pay the same forthwith to the payee.
(8) The provisions of this section shall include the employees in any or all State departments whether office employees or otherwise.
(9) The amount of life insurance for any retired employee shall be reduced and limited to $10,000.00 on the date of his or her retirement. The provisions of this section shall apply to all retirees who complete 20 creditable years of service with the State before their retirement and are insured for group life insurance on their retirement dates. The total premiums for group life insurance provided under this section and section 632 of this title shall be paid by the State on behalf of employees retired in accordance with the terms of subdivision (2) of this subsection, on behalf of employees who are on sick leave without pay for a period not to exceed 12 months and on behalf of any employee on disability retirement until proof of total and permanent disability has been accepted by the insurance company.
(c)(1) At least every five years, the Secretary of Administration shall advertise for bids on the insurance contracts and shall award the contract to the person whose bid or quotation is in the best interest of the State. The Secretary of Administration may reject any bids or quotations and may request additional bids. Upon publication of the request for proposals, health care professional and trade associations may register with the Secretary of Administration to be provided a list of bidders. Such associations may then submit information about the business practices of the bidders for the Secretary of Administration to consider in the course of evaluating bids and request meetings with the Secretary to discuss the information.
(3) At least annually, the Secretary shall hold discussions with established health care professional and trade associations in regard to provider regulation, provider reimbursement, or quality of health care.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section to the contrary and in addition to the powers and duties described in sections 2852 and 2853 of this title and 10 V.S.A. § 2603, the Secretary of Natural Resources, through the Commissioner of Forests, Parks and Recreation, is authorized to expend funds for purposes of continuing employee medical insurance benefits provided to seasonal temporary State employees by their off-season employers. Any expenditure shall be subject to the following limitations:
(1) Funds may be paid either directly to the benefit provider or to the off-season employer as a reimbursement.
(2) The total amount paid for any temporary employee medical insurance reimbursement shall not exceed the costs of group medical benefits for a permanent State employee as determined by the Commissioner of Human Resources, and it shall be within the discretion of the Commissioner of Forests, Parks and Recreation to pay some lesser amount than the maximum.
(3) The Commissioner of Forests, Parks and Recreation shall establish written guidelines regarding the administration of this program, subject to the approval of the Commissioner of Human Resources.
(4) The amount expended by the Commissioner for this program shall be limited to the amount directly saved by the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation on expenses, such as advertising, unemployment compensation, and training, as a result of encouraging the return to State seasonal employment by seasonal employees who have consistent off-season employment. (Amended 1959, No. 170, § 1; 1961, No. 99, §§ 1-3; 1969, No. 68, § 1; 1971, No. 85, § 1; 1971, No. 191 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 1973, No. 37, § 2; 1973, No. 266 (Adj. Sess.), § 10, eff. June 23, 1974; 1975, No. 65, §§ 2, 4; 1977, No. 109, § 3, eff. July 3, 1977, § 33(f); 1977, No. 222 (Adj. Sess.), § 4, eff. July 2, 1978; 1979, No. 59, §§ 11, 15; 1983, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 5(b); 1993, No. 67, § 1; 1995, No. 123 (Adj. Sess.), § 8, eff. June 6, 1996; 1997, No. 147 (Adj. Sess.), § 274a; 2001, No. 27, § 1; 2001, No. 116 (Adj. Sess.), § 11a; 2003, No. 85 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. April 6, 2004; 2003, No. 156 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 14, 15; 2005, No. 71, § 192; 2005, No. 120 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2007, No. 7, § 7; 2007, No. 13, § 21; 2007, No. 71, § 10, eff. June 5, 2007; 2007, No. 116 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2011, No. 139 (Adj. Sess.), § 51, eff. May 14, 2012; 2015, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § E.108.2, eff. June 8, 2016; 2017, No. 81, § 2, eff. June 15, 2017.)