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Schools, CILU Ratify New 3-Year Contract

Includes 2 percent wage increase each year and shift to "consumer-directed" health plan.

The Farmington Board of Education and CILU Local 60 ratified a new three-year contract, spanning July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2015, with a major change in the union’s health insurance plan.

The CILU, which includes about 150 custodians, secretaries and paraprofessionals who work in Farmington schools, agreed to the new contract a few days before the board’s Aug. 28 meeting, when the Board of Education voted to approve it.

The contract includes a 2 percent wage increase for each of the next three years in addition to the switch from the district’s traditional PPO plan, in which all the district’s other bargaining units are enrolled.

The change is to a High Deductible Health Plan Health Savings Account, which gives individuals and families a deductible of $2,000 and $4,000 respectively, according to a press release from the school district. After the deductibles are satisfied, the plan pays 90 percent of medical costs up to an employee out-of-pocket maximum of $2,500 for individuals and $5,000 for families. The plan also features an employer-funded Health Savings Account of $1,500/$3,000.

According to the release, participating employees will continue to contribute 13.5 percent of the plan’s cost, rising to 14.5 percent and then 15.5 percent over the life of the three-year contract. 

The new HDHP HSA plan is a “consumer-directed health plan,” and represents a significant cost savings to the district, according to schools Business Administrator Mike Ryan.

“This represents a big change and really represents where a lot of insurance plans are going right now,” Ryan said. “It’s the direction companies are trying to go. The employees become participants in the program and they become more diligent about what the cost of the program is and being participants in it there’s more oversight of what the claims are. So it’s a significant change.”

In the release, the district calls the contract the result of diligent negotiation “acknowledging the school district’s increasing insurance costs” and cites a history of cooperation in the CILU’s previous contracts, including taking a hard zero increase in 2009.

“The contract negotiated between the Farmington Board of Education and the CILU is the culmination of diligent collective bargaining. The respect between CILU and the Board of Education extends beyond the negotiating table and into the everyday exchanges between the union membership and the Board of Education. CILU is proud of its role in supporting the students of Farmington,” said Pauline Wilson, president of CILU Local 60.

Board of Education Chair Mary Grace Reed commended all parties involved in the negotiations saying, “We sincerely thank the CILU leadership as well as our staff for their vision, support and cooperative spirit as we jointly negotiated this important breakthrough in insurance coverage for Farmington staff.”

Paul Chotkowski September 15, 2012 at 05:15 PM
UNBELIEVABLE! After 3 years the Unionized BOE employees belonging to CILU pay only 15.5% of the cost of their health care premiums when according to NCSL in 2010 the average Private Sector Employee [union and nonunion] in CT pays 23.3% single & 25.7% family. Failure to move this percentage closer to 50% is malfeasance! But if you truly want your head to explode, the town agreed to “contribute” to the unionized employees’ Healthcare Savings Accounts [HSA] which translates into giving union employees the money to pay 75% of their single deductible. SO WHY HAVE THE DUCTABLES IF YOU ARE GOING TO SUBSIDIZED ITS PAYMENT - because deductibles make a good talking point when defending the deal. If you factor in this “contribution” the employee payment % is even lower! It’s a shameful sweetheart deal. Can’t wait to see what the BOE gives away to the FEA! Don’t waste your breath asking “we don’t negotiate in public” can anyone say CATCH UP RAISES? Move health care premium contributions to 50 / 50 for single coverage and stop subsidizing family coverage! IT IS ABOUT TIME THAT THE TOWN'S UNION EMPLOYEES START PAYING THEIR FAIR SHARE! After all isn’t this what fairness looks like after BHO’s fundamentally transforms America! TOWN EMPLOYEES SHOULD PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE! You are not “entitled” to better benefits than the people who pay your wages - we are not Chicago Comrade Party Members [oops should have said CILU members - you say potato, I say potahto]!
Deborah Netto September 15, 2012 at 07:18 PM
But it's all about THE CHILDREN! Wah wah. I am so disgusted! Great job management, Town council and other comrades!
John Haffner September 15, 2012 at 08:55 PM
Your comments have really rallied the opposing group to rally around those that teach our children. I get what your saying, you have said it about EVERY article related to this for years. Look at the result though. Your condescending attitude sparks the opposing view into giving fair wages to those that teach our children. Your huge house (congratulations by the way), is well deserved I am sure. Maybe the town agrees that employees deserve cost of living increases (whether you at your job have gotten one or not). AS ALWAYS, if you don't like farmington taxes, try Avon, West Hartford or Simsbury :D As for you Deborah, I will personally vote against you in every issue. Consider your vote and opinion nullified. Condescending, and arrogance has gotten you folks NO WHERE. Look at the last 4 budget years. Best wishes to all!
Paul Chotkowski September 16, 2012 at 08:20 PM
Mr. H thanks for reinforcing one of my most frequent points. Progressive / Socialist elites truly believe that only they can judge what is “fair” and in most cases like their ethics and morals, fair is situational. For example a fair income tax rate is whatever they say it should be - oh heck lets save time and make it 100% that’s fair, after all you didn’t earn it - but I digress. What is fairer than the town’s union employee’s paying half the cost of their health insurance. Or failing that level of fairness, how about the town’s union employees paying about the same percentage as do the average private-sector working-people who pay taxes in the town? Still not fair? How about requiring that the town’s union employees actually pay their deductibles with their own money rather than with money the town “contributed”? Fair is fair but not to a Progressive / Socialist, to you and your ilk fair is whatever you say it is which mostly involves taking stuff from others! You appear to be truly obsessed with my house maybe you two should meet. As I have said before you don’t need to use Google Maps, tax records, drive-byes or even hiding in the bushes again. This time ring my doorbell, come on in and sit a spell. You have a standing offer for a cup of coffee or an adult beverage. Heck if BHO and Governor MAO LOY get their way and redistribute my living space, you and yours can move in to the spare bedroom - now that would be fair! Cue L'Internationale.

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