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Published: Wednesday, 3/9/2005

Monroe County commissioners delay vote on health-care plan

MONROE - The Monroe County commissioners last night tabled a proposal that would, in some instances, raise health-care costs for the county's 147 nonunion employees.

County Administrator Charles Londo, in a letter to the board, said rising health-care costs are crippling the county's finances and action has to be taken.

Under the proposal, non-union employees would not incur out-of-pocket costs if they signed up with the county's preferred provider, Paramount Health Care of Michigan, although their physician and prescription co-pays would rise under that plan.

However, if the employees want to remain with their current health-care provider, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan PPO, they would have to pay $170 a month. Under another proposed option, the employees could choose the Blue Care Network of Michigan at a cost of $47 a month.

Some of the commissioners and a number of county employees who spoke at the meeting were critical of the administration for not alerting them to the proposed plan until Friday. The five commissioners who voted against the proposal said they needed more time to study the plan, and that the employees should also have more time to study its potential impact.

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