Library Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes

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49 Henry Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866-3271
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Library Board of Trustees
Special Meeting of the Board of Trustees
Friday, May 13, 2022

Issac Pulver, Frank Brady, Kathleen Capelli, Heather Crocker, Carol Daggs, Jean Fei, Janet Lindner, Catherine Brenner, Jennifer Ferriss, Don Flinton

Meeting Called to Order at 4:30 AM

1. 2022-23 Health Insurance Contributions

The Board discussed changes to the Library’s health insurance coverage, which has increased in cost significantly more than expected. All four plans currently offered have increased in cost, with the highest increase, of about 12%, in the current lowest-cost plan which has the highest enrollment among Library staff (11 of 30 eligible). The plan that was formerly second-lowest is now lowest in cost, increasing by 6%.

Current Library policy bases the library’s contribution toward eligible employees’ health insurance on the cost of the least expensive plan that we offer. The Library now contributes the same fixed amount for each plan offered; staff members who enroll in more expensive plans contribute the difference between the Library’s fixed contribution and the remaining premium.

Continuing with the current policy will result in the largest increase in cost. Changing the policy will add flexibility by allowing the Library to designate a base plan each year. The update to the policy would result in additional expense to the Library but also might contribute greatly to staff morale during a period in which pay increases are not keeping up with inflation. A comment submitted by one staff member was taken into consideration by the Board.

Changes to the policy are in italics as follows:

Individual coverage:

Employee: Minimum 5% of premium of library-designated base plan

Library: 95% of premium of library designated-base plan* (base plan is typically the least expensive plan option)

All other coverage tiers:

Employee: Minimum 20% of premium of library-designated base plan

Library: 80% of premium of library designated base plan* (base plan is typically the least expensive plan option)

A change to the buy-out program was also proposed to provide consistency with the above modifications to health insurance policy:

Payments under the buy-out program for employees who enter or leave the program during the plan year because they have a permissible change in status or special enrollment right under the Section 125 Plan will be pro-rated for the exact number of months they did not receive coverage through one of the Library’s health insurance plans. For employees who are eligible for health insurance, the current annual cash payment for waiving Library-sponsored health insurance will be equivalent to 20% of the premium for the Family coverage tier (if multiple health plans are offered, this 20% will be based on the Family premium for the designated base plan). As noted above, the amount of the payment will be pro-rated based upon the number of months that the waiver was in effect.

Frank Brady made a motion to accept the proposed changes to health insurance policy. The motion was seconded by Katie Capelli. All in favor; the motion passed.

2. Library Flag Policy In response to a request by a local group to fly their flag outside the Library, Ike Pulver submitted examples to the Board of flag policies at other libraries. A differentiation was made between banners used inside the Library as part of programming and flags to be flown outside the Library. An outward display may give the appearance of endorsement of a particular group and its message. Discretionary “approval” or “disapproval” of a particular flag could be problematic. Given the absence of a policy the Library will respectfully decline the current request to display the group’s flag. A policy will be added to limit external flag display to the American Flag.

Meeting Adjourned at 5:28 am

Respectfully submitted by:
Janet Lindner, Board Secretary

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