EXECUTIVE ORDER MJF 01-40

EXECUTIVE ORDER MJF 01-40

Uniform Payroll Insurance Commission


WHEREAS, the state of Louisiana currently offers its employees the State Employees Cafeteria Plan (hereafter "the Plan") to pay for certain healthcare, insurance, and other services by direct payroll deduction;

WHEREAS, Act No. 1029 of the 2001 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature requires the governor to create this commission in order to study issues related to the administration, availability, and purchase of certain insurance products through the state uniform payroll system;

WHEREAS, some of these product offerings are IRS Code Section 125 eligible and therefore must meet certain criteria in order for the employees to receive preferential tax treatment from the Internal Revenue Service for funds spent through the Plan;

WHEREAS, a properly administered payroll deduction plan providing high quality insurance-related products at a reasonable rate may provide a significant benefit to the state's employees;

WHEREAS, the interests of the state and its employees would best be served by the creation of a commission composed of members of the legislature, the executive branch, the Office of Group Benefits, and others to study these issues and to recommend appropriate methods to improve the Plan;

NOW THEREFORE, I, M.J. "MIKE" FOSTER, JR., Governor of the state of Louisiana, by virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana, do hereby order and direct as follows:

SECTION 1: The Uniform Payroll Insurance Commission (hereafter "Commission") is established within the executive department, Office of the Governor.

SECTION 2: The duties and functions of the Commission shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

A. Studying all issues related to the administration, availability and purchase of certain insurance products by state employees through the state uniform payroll system.

B. Studying the feasibility of improving voluntary insurance products (exclusive of those offered by the Office of Group Benefits) offered under the uniform payroll system operated by the Division of Administration by examining best practices of other local, state, federal, and privately funded programs;

C. Examining all reasonable options to improve the efficiency and cost effective administration of all voluntary insurance products (exclusive of those offered by the Office of Group Benefits) offered under the uniform payroll system operated by the Division of Administration, including: program structure, oversight, offerings, method of selection, internal administration, etc.

D. Establishing criteria for vendor and employee participation, as well as definable and measurable quality control measures; and

E. Conducting public hearings to receive input from state employees, current and potential product offerers? stakeholders, and others that are impacted or affected by the program.

SECTION 3: The Commission shall submit a comprehensive written report to the governor by February 1, 2002, which addresses the issues set forth in Section 2.

SECTION 4: The Commission shall be composed of twelve (12) members who shall be appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of, the governor. The membership of the Commission shall be selected as follows:

A. the governor, or the governor's designee;

B. the commissioner of administration, or the commissioner's designee;

C. the chair of the Senate Insurance Committee, or the chair's designee;

D. the chair of the House Insurance Committee, or the chair's designee;

E. the chief executive officer of the Office of Group Benefits, or the chief executive officer's designee;

F. the commissioner of insurance, or the commissioner's designee;

G. the secretary of the Department of Health and Hospitals, or the secretary's designee;

H. the secretary of the Department of Revenue, or the secretary's designee;

I. the secretary of the Department of Social Services, or the secretary's designee;

J. the secretary of the Department of Corrections, or the secretary's designee; and

K. two (2) members who represent the interests of private insurance companies.

SECTION 5: The governor's designee shall serve as chair of the Commission. All other officers, if any, shall be elected by the members of the Commission.

SECTION 6: The Commission shall meet at the call of the chair.

SECTION 7: Support staff, facilities, and resources for the meetings of the Commission shall be provided by and/or arranged by the Division of Administration.

SECTION 8:

A. Commission members shall not receive additional compensation or a per diem for serving on the Commission.

B. Commission members who are employees or elected public officials of the state of Louisiana may seek reimbursement of travel expenses, in accordance with PPM 49, from their employing and/or elected department, agency, and/or office.

C. Commission members who are also members of the Louisiana Legislature may seek a per diem from the House of Representatives or the Senate, as appropriate, for their attendance at Commission meetings and/or service on the Commission.

SECTION 9: All departments, commissions, boards, agencies, and officers of the state, or any political subdivision thereof, are authorized and directed to cooperate with the Commission in implementing the provisions of this Order.

SECTION 10: This Order is effective upon signature and shall continue in effect until amended, modified, terminated, or rescinded by the governor, or terminated by operation of law.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand officially and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of Louisiana, at the Capitol, in the city of Baton Rouge, on this 17th day of September, 2001.

M.J. "Mike" Foster, Jr.
Governor

ATTEST BY
THE GOVERNOR
Fox McKeithen
Secretary of State