Glen Cove to vote on tightening retirement health care

Glen Cove City Hall is shown.

Glen Cove City Hall is shown. Photo Credit: T.C. McCarthy

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The Glen Cove City Council is expected to vote Tuesday on raising the standard for employees to receive retirement health insurance coverage.

Under one resolution, employees would be required to work for 10 years instead of the current five to receive coverage. In addition, five of those 10 years must be employment with the city, with the other five coming for any other state or local government entity. If approved, the change would begin next year.

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"Right now, the practice is five years of service and you're eligible for medical benefits in retirement," Mayor Reginald Spinello said. "The problem with that is, if you look around at most places, it is 10 years. So I'm looking to increase the standard to 10 years, with five years of service in Glen Cove."

He said that "someone could work somewhere else for 41/2 years and they come here for a half of a year to get their fifth year and then the city is responsible for their medical benefits in retirement."

He had no estimate of future savings. Only full-time city employees are eligible for retirement health insurance coverage. The new law would not cover benefits spelled out in union contracts, which already have the 10-year requirement.

A second resolution under consideration would require employees retiring after Jan. 1, 2015, to pay 10 percent of the premium toward the city's health care coverage. Currently, under an administrative order, anyone hired after 2012 is already paying 10 percent of his or her retirement health care costs. This resolution would codify that level of contribution beginning next year. Before 2012, employees paid nothing for their retirement health care costs.

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