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Substitute House Bill No. 5645

PUBLIC ACT NO. 96-234

AN ACT OPENING THE STATE EMPLOYEE HEALTH PLAN TO MUNICIPAL AND SMALL BUSINESS EMPLOYEES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 5-259 of the general statutes is amended by adding subsections (g), (h), (i) and (j) as follows:

(NEW) (g) The Comptroller may provide for coverage of municipal employees under the plan or plans procured under subsection (a) of this section, provided: (1) Participation by each municipal employer shall be on a voluntary basis; (2) where an employee organization represents employees in a municipality, participation in a plan or plans to be procured under subsection (a) of this section shall be by mutual agreement of the municipal employer and the employee organization only and neither party may submit the issue of participation to binding arbitration except by mutual agreement; (3) no group of employees shall be refused entry into the plan by reason of past or future health care costs or claim experience; (4) rates paid by the state for its employees under subsection (a) of this section are not adversely affected by this subsection; (5) administrative costs to the plan or plans provided under this subsection shall be paid by the participating municipality at no additional cost to the state; and (6) participation in the plan or plans in an amount determined by the state shall be for the duration of the period of the plan or plans, or for such other period as mutually agreed by the municipality and the Comptroller. For the purposes of this subsection, "municipality" shall have the same meaning as provided in section 7-425.

(NEW) (h) (1) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, the existing rights and obligations of state employee organizations and the state employer under current law and contract shall not be impaired by the provisions of this section. (2) Other conditions of entry for any group into the plan or plans procured under subsection (a) of this section shall be determined by the Comptroller upon the recommendation of a coalition committee established pursuant to subsection (f) of section 5-278, except for such conditions referenced in subsection (g) of this section. (3) Additional determinations by the Comptroller on (i) issues generated by any group's actual or contemplated participation in the plan or plans, (ii) modifications to the terms and conditions of any group's continued participation, (iii) related matters shall be made upon the recommendation of such committee. (4) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, a municipal employer and an employee organization may upon mutual agreement reopen a collective bargaining agreement for the exclusive purpose of negotiating on the participation by such municipal employer or employee organization in the plan or plans offered under the provisions of this section.

(NEW) (i) The Comptroller shall submit annually to the General Assembly a review of the coverage of municipal employees under the state health plan beginning February 1, 1998.

(NEW) (j) Effective July 1, 1996, any deputies or special deputies appointed pursuant to section 6-37 or section 6-43, shall be allowed to participate in the plan or plans procured by the Comptroller pursuant to subsection (a) of this section. Such participation shall be voluntary and the participant shall pay the full cost of the coverage under such plan.

Sec. 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 1996.

Approved June 6, 1996. Effective July 1, 1996.

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