Jan 20, 2017


Earlier today, at its scheduled meeting, the Group Insurance Commission (GIC) fast tracked a vote to implement plan design changes to state employee health insurance plans beginning on July 1st.  NAGE led the charge to delay the vote in order to gather more data and have an opportunity to determine the impact that the changes will have on members.  NAGE GIC Commissioner Bobbi Kaplan made a motion to delay the vote that was seconded by fellow NAGE Commissioner Margaret Thompson, but the proposal was defeated by a narrow margin (9-8) on the management controlled commission.

“Over the last two years Governor Baker has committed his administration to increased transparency and accountability in Government” said Commissioner Kaplan, “today’s vote to speed these changes through without public input and time for adequate study was contrary to the governor’s commitment.”

Commissioner Thompson shared Kaplan’s concerns, highlighting the push for a vote before a scheduled February 1 public hearing on the changes saying, "the GIC is putting the cart before the horse here, and now we will have a public hearing on a plan that has effectively already been approved, after the fact.”

NAGE National President David Holway was left to question the wisdom of the GIC’s vote saying, “It seems that the GIC acted irresponsibly and unfairly with respect to Governor Baker and his continued call for increased transparency.  I can’t imagine the Governor supporting a vote on a plan two weeks before a scheduled public hearing on that plan.  It doesn’t make any sense.”

Please stay connected to the NAGE website in the coming weeks for additional information related to the GIC as budget season gets underway, and how widely expected changes to health care policy at the federal level may impact Massachusetts families.

Where trade unions are most firmly organized, there are the rights of the people most respected. - Samuel Gompers
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