December 2019 GIC Meeting


The Group Insurance Commission (GIC) met at One Ashburton Place in Boston on December 19th. Dr. Roberta Herman, Executive Director of the GIC, has stepped down to take the role as President and CEO of Joslin Diabetes Center. Her last day running the GIC was December 11th. GIC Chief of Staff Joan Masumoto is going to be taking over as interim Executive Director until a new ED is hired.

Joan Matsumoto started the meeting with her Director’s Report. The most important upcoming item on the calendar are the Public Listening Sessions. The GIC is attempting to make the meetings more accessible to working members by having most start later in the day at 5:30pm.  These meetings listed are as follows:

City

Location and Address

Date

Time

Parking/Transit

Worcester

Worcester State University (Student Center-Blue Lounge), 486 Chandler Street

January 22, 2020

5:30PM- 7:00PM

Any available lots on campus

Brockton

Massasoit Community College (Lecture Hall – Liberal Arts Building), One Massasoit Blvd.

January 23, 2020

5:30PM-7:00PM

Lot across from Business Building

Springfield

MassMutual Center (Meeting Room 1, First Floor), 1277 Main Street

January 28, 2020

5:00PM-6:30PM

Civic Center Garage or MGM Springfield

Boston

McCormack State Office Building (21st Floor Conference Rooms), One Ashburton Place

January 29, 2020

5:00PM-6:30PM

Blue: Bowdoin

Green/Red: Park St.

Lawrence

Lawrence Main Public Library (Sargent Auditorium), 51 Lawrence Street

January 30, 2020

5:30PM- 7:00PM

Haverhill St. and Old Lawrence H.S. parking lots

Barnstable

Barnstable High School (Night Lecture Hall),

744 W Main Street, Hyannis, MA

February 4, 2020

5:30PM- 7:00PM

High School lots

These meetings are important opportunities for MOSES members to learn more about the GIC and to speak out on the positive and negative aspects of the GIC before the new fiscal year that starts in July 2020. We implore any MOSES members that can attend, should go and make their voices heard.

After the public hearings were discussed, the Director Report tackled some of the new legislative updates. On the federal front, the committee was concerned with the Trump administration’s recent repeal of taxes associated with the Affordable Care Act (e.g. the Cadillac tax). Updates coming on how fewer tax revenue will affect this upcoming year’s GIC plans.

Following the Director’s report, Denise Donnelly, Jeff Levin-Scherz, and Vinvent Kane led a presentation on out of pocket expenses. Out of pocket expense have skyrocketed in recent years, but the median out of pocket costs have stabilized over the last two years. The GIC’s plans’ percentage of premium and out of pocket costs (compared to total costs) are on par with other public sector unions and lower compared to private plans. Despite knowing how much money is being paid out of pocket, the GIC still doesn’t know the root cause for these out of pocket costs and will conduct an in-depth study this year. While out of pocket costs have remained somewhat flat, the GIC projects a 4.9% budget increase to offset increasing costs.

The last major item of discussion revolved around the process for hiring the new Executive Director. Due to open meeting law requirements, the search committee cannot consist of a quorum of members of the GIC. The GIC chair, Valerie Sullivan, will lead up a “pre-screening” search committee that consists of several volunteering GIC board members. Prior to soliciting applications, all GIC members will privately be surveyed by the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development HR. The survey results will explore the members’ priorities for hiring a new Executive Director including experience, credentials, and vision for the future of GIC.

Once applications for the ED position have been solicited. Chair Sullivan, with the advice of the pre-screening committee, will advance at least two applications before the whole GIC. The pre-screening committee wants to ensure that only the top two/several candidates that are selected are to be interviewed in front of the GIC because many people don’t want to interview in front of the public unless they are the final candidate due to upsetting their current places of employment. No deadline has been set yet on when they expect to hire a new ED.