INDIANA STATE UNIVERSITY FACULTY SENATE
Committee members and their record of attendance:
Eliezer Bermúdez, Health/Human Performance 13 2
John Conant, Arts & Sciences 9 6
Amy Craddock, Arts & Sciences 14 1
Melanie Fagert, Technology 9 6
Larry Kunes, Arts & Sciences 11 4
Rolland McGiverin, Library 13 2
Peter Mikolaj, Business 13 2
Terak Zaher, Business 4 11
Single Semester Appointment:
Stan Henderson (F), Health/Human Performance 8 0
Judy Tribble (S), Library 5 2
Faculty Senate Liaison:
Jeff Harper, Business 11 4
Richard Antonak, Administrative Affairs
Candy Barton, Staff Benefits
Peter Mikolaj, Chairperson
Eliezer Bermúdez, Vice-chair/Secretary
ACTIVITIES OF FEBC FOR 2003-04
FEBC received three charges from the Senate Executive Committee. One additional charge was received in the spring semester. The committee was able to complete three of its charges and forward recommendations to the Executive Committee. The fourth charge is recommended for continuation next year. FEBC especially commends Amy Craddock for her leadership and hard work in developing, conducting, and analyzing the results of a health benefits survey of all ISU employees.
During the fall semester, the committee spent several meeting reviewing the need for an increase in health benefits premiums due to the escalating cost of health claims. FEBC forwarded a recommendation to the Executive Committee that there be a 15% increase applied across the board for all employees and retirees for 2004. The committee noted that unless some form of intervention take place, the increasing rate of health claims experienced for the ISU Health Benefit Program will cause a 200% increase in premiums over the next five years.
Charge: Survey the faculty to determine current perceptions of the ISU health care benefits package and report results to the Executive Committee.
FEBC surveyed all university employees for employee perceptions of ISU health care benefits. Amy Craddock chaired a subcommittee and through her leadership and hard work, developed the survey. Because it was determined that the survey should be to all ISU employees, the subcommittee met with the Support Staff Salary and Employee Benefits Committee to receive relevant input. In March 2004, the survey was distributed to all 1799 benefits-eligible employees. The Office of Staff Benefits generously underwrote the $316 cost of the survey. The following summary report from the survey was forwarded to the Executive Committee.
There were 721 surveys returned, which is a response rate of 40%. Of those responding, 87.6% currently have ISU health benefits, compared to 83% of all benefits-eligible ISU employees. To provide an idea of whether the group of respondents is representative of ISU employees overall, the following information is provided:
The table above indicates that the salary tier breakdown of those who responded to the survey are similar to the salary tier breakdown of employees overall. Just over 30% of respondents are in salary tier I, as are 29.2% of ISU employees; 54.6% of respondents are in salary tier II, as are 59.3% of ISU employees; and 14.8% of respondents are in salary tier III as are 11.6% of ISU employees. The salary tier breakdown of all ISU employees is not significantly different from that of survey respondents. Likewise, the salary tier breakdown of ISU employees who have health benefits is not significantly different form that of survey respondents with health coverage.
The tables presented below contain un-weighted counts and percentages. The survey asked employees to first indicate whether ISU should offer a particular type of coverage. If the employee answered, “Yes,” then the survey asked the employee to indicate how likely he or she would be to use this coverage. We found that a number of respondents did not follow this instruction and answered the questions regarding the likelihood of use, even if they indicated that ISU should not offer the coverage. After discussing the matter, the FEBC decided to report all responses on the “likelihood of use” questions regardless of how employees answered the question regarding whether ISU should offer the coverage.
Domestic Partner Coverage
The survey asked employees whether they believed ISU should offer medical coverage for same-sex and opposite sex domestic partners. These questions reflect another charge to the FEBC:
The responses are as follows:
Next, the survey asked employees how likely they would ever be to take advantage of the coverage, should it be offered.
Overall, 6.5% (26) of the 401 employees responding to the question regarding same-sex domestic partner coverage indicated that they would probably or definitely take advantage of this coverage. Given the 40.5% response rate of the survey, we estimate that this 6.5% figure represents approximately 64 employees. An additional 3.7% (approximately 37 more employees) indicated that they might take advantage of this coverage at some point.
Almost 12% of the 408 employees responding to the question about opposite-sex domestic partner coverage indicated that they would probably or definitely take advantage of this coverage at some point. We estimate that this response represents approximately 119 employees. An additional 18.1% (approximately 183 more employees) indicated that they might take advantage of this coverage at some point.
Flexible Spending Accounts and Dependent Care Spending Accounts
The survey asked about two types of accounts: medical flexible spending accounts (FSA) and dependent care spending accounts (DCSA). Responses to questions regarding this coverage are as follows:
Overall, 33.1% of the 495 employees responding to the question about FSAs, indicated they probably or definitely would establish an FSA. Given the 40% response rate of the survey, we estimate that this response represents approximately 405 employees. An additional 33.1% (approximately 405 more employees) indicated that they might establish an FSA at some point. Just over 17% of the 495 employees responding to the question regarding DCSAs indicated that they probably or definitely would establish a DCSA. We estimate that this response represents approximately 212 employees. An additional 32.1% (approximately 393 more employees) indicated that they might establish a DCSA at some point.
Additional analyses are planned and will be reported in the fall. These will include an analysis of the remaining items on the survey, as well as a summary of the narrative comments made by a number of respondents.
Charge: Continue to work on a proposal for health insurance for same gender couples.
Based on the results of the FEBC Survey of Health Benefit Options with unanimous approval of members present at the April 14 meeting, FEBC forwarded the following recommendations for adoption to the Executive Committee:
That Indiana State University adopt coverage of benefits for same sex
That Indiana State University include Dependent Care Spending Accounts as
part of the health benefits program.
FEBC discussed the charge with Staff Benefits Office and found that new procedures for this type of situation had been recently adopted. FEBC felt that the new procedures were an improvement and commended the Staff Benefits Office for the changes. The new applicable Benefits Service Guidelines upon the death of an employee are as follows:
Life Insurance: Benefits Staff complete paperwork and work with family
Last Payroll Check:
Short Term Loan:
Peter Mikolaj and Candy Barton met with Kevin Hoolehan, Managing Director of the Indiana State University Foundation to discuss the feasibility of the Foundation making a short term loan available in situations where the family of a deceased employee is in financial straits and in need of short term financial assistance. The Foundation will be considering a procedure to accommodate this type of situation at their Fall Board Meeting.
Charge: Establish communications with the University Compensation Committee. Review the Committee’s reports to provide input on the results of the compensation study.
FEBC met in the fall with Vice-President Gregg Floyd, chair of the University Compensation Committee (UCC) and Jeff Harper, faculty member representative of the UCC and Executive Committee Liaison to FEBC, to discuss the status of the study. FEBC was expecting to have some results from the UCC by early spring. In March, FEBC asked Chairperson Mikolaj to request another meeting with Vice-President Floyd, because FEBC, to that point, had not received any further information from the UCC. Vice-President Floyd responded that the UCC was unwilling to prematurely release findings until all of the consultant's data was thoroughly reviewed and determined to be an accurate and a complete response to the charge from the UCC. FEBC recommends that this charge be continued next year.
Recommended FEBC charges for next year: