City drawing interest from other insurance providers

COLUMBIANA – The city’s past discussions about moving away from self-funded insurance have generated interest from other providers.

Last week Stan McCamon of McCamon-Hunt Insurance in Youngstown said the agency has worked with other groups that were previously self-funded, and is currently the provider for the city of Youngstown.

“What I’ve read in the paper it sounds like you have some issues with your current health plan,” he said to council members.

Council members tossed about the idea of leaving the self-funded plan over the last year, with a recent bout of expensive claims possibly being the last straw.

The plan is administered by MCA Administrators and the city pays 100 percent of the maximum possible cost for its full-time employees.

During the last two months of 2012, the city spent an additional $194,000 in claims resulting in the city’s combined cost for claims and insurance to climb a few dollars over $1 million.

The city had originally budgeted $902,900 for insurance claims in 2012.

Acting City Manager and Finance Director Mike Harold said the city actually spent less than he expected on the serious claims that required the additional money in November and December.

He had first requested $150,000 be appropriated to the insurance fund and later requested an additional $60,000 in the fund to cover the claims that came in suddenly.

Last week he said the city didn’t use $16,000 of the $60,000 he had requested.

“We didn’t need all of it … I just requested that to hope that we had enough there to meet the claims. That is the highest amount it has been the last couple of years,” he said.

Council members and Mayor David Spatholt told McCamon they would look over the agency’s proposal.

Harold said he has fielded phone calls from other agencies expressing an interest in being the city’s provider.

On another matter, Harrold told council the city’s 2012 income tax revenue increased slightly over 2011. Revenue was at $2.1 million for last year, and he said it’s the first time since 2007 the tax revenue has exceeded $2 million.

Business income tax also experienced a “jump,” while individual income tax revenue went down about 4.8 percent from 2011, he added.