1998 Regular Session
To: Insurance; Appropriations
By: Representatives Moak, Reynolds
House Bill 710
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 25-15-15, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE THAT RETIRED JUDGES WHO ARE PLACED ON SENIOR STATUS MAY CONTINUE TO RECEIVE STATE INSURANCE COVERAGE IF THEY WORK AS SPECIAL JUDGES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 25-15-15, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
25-15-15. The Department of Finance and Administration is directed to study the feasibility of lowering the deductible amounts for claims upon the above health insurance plan for each active full-time employee and participating dependent, and shall make a report to the Legislature and the Governor on or before December 1, 1993. The state shall provide fifty percent (50%) of the cost of the above life insurance plan and one hundred percent (100%) of the cost of the above health insurance plan for all active full-time employees, and the employees shall be given the opportunity to purchase coverage for their eligible dependents with the premiums for such dependent coverage as well as the employee's fifty percent (50%) share for his life insurance coverage to be deductible from the employee's salary by the agency, department or institution head, which deductions, together with the fifty percent (50%) share of such life insurance premiums of such employing agency, department or institution head from funds appropriated to or authorized to be expended by such employing agency, department or institution head, shall be deposited directly into a depository bank or special fund in the State Treasury, as determined by the department. These funds and interest earned on these funds may be used for the disbursement of claims and shall be exempt from the appropriation process. The Department of Finance and Administration may establish and enforce late charges and interest penalties or other penalties for the purpose of requiring the prompt payment of all premiums for life and health insurance permitted under Chapter 15 of Title 25. All funds in excess of the amount needed for disbursement of claims shall be deposited in a special fund in the State Treasury to be known as the State Employees Insurance Fund. The State Treasurer shall invest all funds in the State Employees Insurance Fund and all interest earned shall be credited to the State Employees Insurance Fund. Such funds shall be placed with one or more depositories of the state and invested on the first day such funds are available for investment in certificates of deposit, repurchase agreements or in United States Treasury bills or as otherwise authorized by law for the investment of Public Employees' Retirement System funds, as long as such investment is made from competitive offering and at the highest and best market rate obtainable consistent with any available investment alternatives; however, such investments shall not be made in shares of stock, common or preferred, or in any other investments which would mature more than one (1) year from the date of investment. The department shall have the authority to draw from this fund periodically such funds as are necessary to operate the self-insurance plan or to pay to the insurance carrier the cost of operation of this plan, it being the purpose to limit the amount of participation by the state to fifty percent (50%) of the cost of the life insurance program and not to limit the contracting for additional benefits where the cost will be paid in full by the employee. The state shall not share in the cost of coverage for retired employees.
The department shall also provide for the creation of an Insurance Reserve Fund and funds therein shall be invested by the State Treasurer with all interest earned credited to the State Employees Insurance Fund.
Except as otherwise provided herein for senior status judges, any retired employee electing to purchase retired life and health insurance will have the full cost of such insurance deducted monthly from his State of Mississippi retirement plan check or direct billed for the cost of the premium.
For purposes of insurance coverage under this section, a retired judge who is placed on senior status in accordance with Section 9-1-107 is considered an active full-time employee if he serves as a special judge in accordance with Section 9-1-105.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1998.