The 1-2-3 of Strong Pension Plans

A recent article points to the fact that there are examples of well-managed public pension systems - and shares a few of their practices. Bad press has blurred the fact that not all public pension plans are underfunded and overly generous. -Governing Among the qualities of pension plans that are fiscally sound are: They provide moderate benefits and require cost analysis before any change in benefits; They provide retirement incomes of between 30 and 50% of an employee's…

Comments Off on The 1-2-3 of Strong Pension Plans
End of Session Update: Employee Benefits and Relations

A previous post provided the status of various employee benefit and relation bills that MACo took a position on. Now that the dust has settled, this post provides the final of these bills, which did not reach final passage until the last day. Direct Deposit of Wages:  HB 233/SB 484 would authorize counties and municipal corporations to pay employees’ wages by direct deposit.  The House and Senate took differing approaches with these bills and a…

0 Comments
“Last Day” Issues Wrap Up

As reported yesterday by MACo, a number of issues with county effect remained in play prior to the midnight deadline for the General Assembly session.  Below is an overview of how each of those bills ultimately played out: Maintenance of Effort – As reported yesterday, three bills were awaiting  final action. MACo supported HB 44 and SB 53 as a legislative initiative, to expand and balance the process for considering county MOE waiver requests —and…

0 Comments
Session Update: Employee Benefits and Relations

This post summarizes the status of various employee benefits and relations bills that MACo took a position on. Direct Deposit of Wages:  HB 233/SB 484 would authorize counties and municipal corporations to pay employees’ wages by direct deposit.  However, the House has taken an approach that would require direct deposit, unless the employee opts out.  The Senate's approach would require direct deposit as a condition of employment and provide an opt-out for those individuals who do…

1 Comment
MACo and Administration Reach Compromise on Extended Unemployment Benefits

The Administration’s bill ( HB 1228/SB 882) to accept federally-paid extended unemployment insurance benefits for private sector workers has raised concerns with the effect on public sector employers, who are self-insured and must pay for these benefits directly.   During the hearings on both bills, MACo and MML requested the opportunity to work with the Administration and the Committees to identify ways to help local governments accommodate these costs without putting new strains on local budgets. Through…

9 Comments
Session Update: Health Legislation

This post summarizes the status of various health bills that MACo took a position on. Ambulance Service Providers and Assignment of Benefits:  HB 83/SB 154 would require health insurers to reimburse an ambulance provider (must be owned, operated,or under the jurisdiction of a political subdivision or a volunteer fire company or rescue squad) directly for covered services.  If an ambulance company provides a service to an individual and the company does not participate in that individual’s…

4 Comments
Budget Conferees Meet – Pensions and Retiree Health Areas of Disagreement

As previously reported, a House and Senate conference committee has been appointed to resolve the differences in each chamber's respective budget plan.  As reported by MarylandReporter.com, the biggest areas of disagreement are over pensions and retiree health benefits.  These differences are summarized below. RETIREMENT AGE: The Senate adopted the “Rule of 92” to receive full pension benefits. This means that the age of an employee or teacher at their retirement and their length of service…

0 Comments
Extended Unemployment Insurance Benefits Could Place Undue Financial Burden on Local Governments

MACo Associate Director Andrea Mansfield and MML Director Government Relations Candace Donoho testified  in support of  HB 1228/SB 882 with amendments.  The proposed bills would provide an extended 13 weeks of unemployment insurance benefits to Maryland’s long-term unemployed who have exhausted all of their State and federal emergency unemployment benefits.  The Federal government is providing 100% funding for private employers, but the State and many local governments are self-insured and would be required to pay…

1 Comment
Senate Moves Bill on Ambulance Service Reimbursements

SB 154, sponsored by Senator Richard Colburn, which would ensure that county and volunteer fire companies and rescue squads are receiving reimbursements for providing this service is moving favorably through the Senate with MACo supported amendments. Depending upon the jurisdiction, these services may be provided by a local government, or a volunteer fire company or rescue squad.  Although some ambulance services may become a participating provider with a health network, they are not a member…

0 Comments
Bill To Allow Direct Deposit for Employee Paychecks Passes Senate with MACo Supported Amendments

Senate Bill 484, sponsored by Senator Nancy King, which authorizes county and municipal governments to make direct deposits for employee wages passed the Senate with MACo supported amendments. The original bill only applied to municipal governments and during testimony at the bill hearing, MACo supported the bill and requested county governments be given the same authority.  As amended, the bill provides that counties and municipalities may require the direct deposit of wages as a condition…

0 Comments
Close Menu