Scottsdale employees to see up-tick to monthly healthcare premiums

A view of a City Hall entrance in Old Town Scottsdale. (File photo)

Scottsdale employees can expect a $6 to $30 increase to monthly health insurance premiums and a 3.2 percent increase to monthly dental premiums following city council approving negotiated terms with Cigna Healthcare.

Scottsdale City Council approved the negotiated terms during an early March public hearing, but new terms will not go into effect until the beginning of the next fiscal year.
Scottsdale’s 2018-19 fiscal year begins July 1.

“We continue to strive to increase employees communication and engagement,” said Lauran Beebe, a human resources manager at the city of Scottsdale. “The medial plan currently has 2,144 covered employees, with about 5,600 members. We continue to have a risk-adverse culture with 68 percent of employees enrolled in the Cigna OAP Network Plan.”

Ms. Beebe points out negotiated terms have created better coverage for local employees while tempering premium cost increases.

“If we made no changes and continue with the plan design as it is today we would experience a 7.3 percent increase or $30.5 million in expected medical costs,” she explained.

“The recommended changes result in an overall 8.1 percent increase with a $30.8 million in expected medical costs. Our claims and health risk assessment data reveals that 33 percent of our population has a chronic disease. Our No. 1 chronic disease continues to be high blood pressure and it affects 11 percent of our membership.”

As of January 2018, there were 2,122 active and 22 enrollees in the Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System in the four established municipal medical plans, city officials say.

The Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System is a 236-member organization managing the pension plans for eligible public safety personnel entities statewide.

The Arizona Constitution recognizes public employee pensions, while PSPRS and its duties were established in the late 1960s to ensure public safety employees equal footing in terms of pension eligibility, contribution rates and benefit formulas.

A breakdown of Scottsdale healthcare employee numbers are:

  • 1,463 are enrolled in the open-access plan;
  • 122 are enrolled in the local-plus plan;
  • 318 are enrolled in the open-access PPO plan; and
  • 241 are enrolled in the HSA plan.

Scottsdale City Council approved the new healthcare plans for its employees at the March 6 regular meeting at City Hall, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd.

Independent Newsmedia Arizona Managing Editor Terrance Thornton can be contacted at

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