health insurance

Retiree health insurance to end for new administrators in Buffalo schools | Education

Lifetime health insurance is about to become a thing of the past for administrators in the Buffalo Public Schools.

Administrators hired after July 2023 will not be eligible for health insurance paid for by the district after they retire, under the terms of a new contract approved this week by the School Board. 

“It is significant. It’s something the district had pursued for at least the last two collective bargaining agreements,” said Robert Boreanaz, the attorney for the Buffalo Council of Supervisors and Administrators.

Over the years, Boreanaz said, Buffalo had become one of the few districts in New York State still providing retirees with health insurance.

Administrators hired prior to July 2023 will remain eligible for retiree health insurance.

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Those hired after July 2023 will have the option of selling back to the district up to 120 unused sick days to be used toward the cost of their health insurance premiums after they retire.

Teachers in Buffalo still receive retiree health insurance. The Buffalo Teachers Federation is currently in negotiations with the district for a new contract. Union President Phil Rumore said the district is hoping to negotiate an end to retiree health insurance for

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Liz Weston: Health insurance coverage concerns complicate decisions about retirement

Dear Liz: I work for a wonderful company that has a generous profit sharing plan. I am 61 years old and plan on working until I am 65 and eligible for Medicare.

Due to some health issues, I am reducing my hours and this will significantly reduce my income for the next four years. I thought this was a good plan because it keeps my health insurance intact, but now I am wondering if the lower earnings will affect my profit sharing when I retire. I know the final distribution is based on earnings and time on the job. Should I retire now, while my income is up, or should I wait until I am 65?

Answer: There are a lot of moving parts to any decision about retirement. How much will health insurance cost and how will you pay for it? How much do you have saved and how long are those funds likely to last? What’s the best time to apply for Social Security and how will that affect your retirement fund withdrawals? (It’s often best to delay Social Security as long as possible and draw down retirement savings instead, especially if you’re the primary earner, but individual

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Montgomery Co. schools could owe millions to former staff over prepaid insurance premiums

Former employees of Montgomery County Public Schools could be owed millions of dollars after a report found that they forfeited prepaid health insurance premiums when leaving the Maryland school system.

Former employees of Montgomery County Public Schools could be owed millions of dollars after a report found that they forfeited prepaid health insurance premiums when leaving the Maryland school system.

Anywhere from $3 million to $13.5 million in overpaid premiums were kept from retiring and departing staff at Montgomery County Public Schools over the course of two-plus decades, according to a new report from the county’s Office of Inspector General.

The overpayments were neither refunded to eligible employees nor remitted to health insurance providers.

The OIG said that the practice has been going on for at least 22 years, and that the school system first became aware of it about seven or eight years ago.

“A senior manager estimated that refunds due to individual retirees would likely range from $200 to $900 depending on the insurance plan they selected,” the report reads.

Over the last three years, the OIG said an average of 683 employees either retired or resigned from working with Montgomery County schools.

Those numbers helped shape

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Student-Loan Borrower Chooses Between Paying Debt and Health Insurance

  • Robin O’Brien, 61, has $64,000 in student debt from her master’s degree.
  • She’s experiencing long COVID, which has caused her to work part time earning half an income.
  • Now, she’s forced to choose between affording health insurance or paying off her student debt.

Even on an income-driven repayment plan for her $64,000 student-debt load, Robin O’Brien can’t afford the payments.

After working in long-term care facilities for 25 years, O’Brien said the next step in her career was becoming an administrator — but in order to be in that field while making a sufficient income, she needed a master’s degree. When she took out federal loans to take online classes at two public universities, and after graduating in 2017, there was no way she could have foreseen the pandemic and the financial strain it would bring.

Now, she’s dealing with long-COVID symptoms that forced her to work part time, and her medical bills and student-debt bills are unmanageable.

“Right now, I’m picking five of the envelopes with medical bills, and then I’ll pay them $20 apiece,” O’Brien said, referring to the stack of bills she gets each month. “And the next month I’ll take five

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