Chesterton Tribune

Town OKs clinic deal with Franciscan Alliance

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The Chesterton Town Council has approved a clinic arrangement for municipal employees with Franciscan Alliance (FA), currently building a 24-hour ER department on Indian Boundary Road.

At their meeting Monday night, members voted 5-0 to finalize that arrangement, under which employees will still have the choice of health-care provider but will pay less if they visit an FA clinic:

•Co-pay for a doctor’s office visit: nothing at an FA clinic; $15 anywhere else (lowered from a proposed $20 but increased from the current $10).

•Cost of services: a 40-percent discount at an FA clinic; an 18- to 25-percent discount anywhere else.

•Cost of X-rays and labs: a 40-percent discount at an FA clinic: an 18- to 25-percent discount anywhere else.

Employees will see their annual deductible increase: from $250 to $500 for a single; from $350 to $700 for a family. But employees who use FA clinics will likely meet that deductible at a slower rate.

FA has clinics in Valparaiso, Michigan City, and Crown Point. The Chesterton clinic should open in the next few months.

President Sharon Darnell, D-4th, did note that a “Lunch to Learn” wellness program begun earlier this year for employees, at the suggestion of Anton Insurance Agency, has been a success. “It’s done a heck of a job bettering the health of our employees, to keep costs down so we can continue to offer health insurance,” she said.

Changes to Personnel Policy

In other business, members approved two changes to the town’s Employee Personnel Policy:

•Police officers who now work 12-hours shifts—alternating between 48 hours per week and 36—will be eligible for four vacation days after one year of service; seven after two years; 11 after five years; 14 days after 10 years; and 18 after 20 years.

•The policy of partially reimbursing Utility employees for continuing education—with the amount of reimbursement based on their grade for a course—had been expanded to all municipal employees.

Local 4600

Meanwhile, Fire Chief Mike Orlich announced that the town’s 2012 contract with Local 4600 of the International Association of Firefighters has been successfully negotiated, with no changes to the document.




Posted 11/29/2011