CHEYENNE, Wyo. — A bill that would prevent municipalities from joining the state’s health insurance pool was sent to the Rules and Procedure Committee on Tuesday, Feb. 11.
SF 26 states: “No political subdivision other than a school district or board of cooperative educational services shall be eligible to elect to initially participate in the Wyoming state employees’ and officials’ group insurance plan on or after April 1, 2020. Any political subdivision other than participating in the plan prior to April 1, 2020 shall not be eligible to renew participation in the plan after the expiration of the political subdivision’s initial participation period.
The bill was voted through on a consent list, meaning this was a list of bills that had no pending amendments.
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This change would impact the City of Casper and its employees, as the city council voted in August to join the state’s health insurance pool after discovering it was an option available to the city. The options would provide coverage to all retirees. Part-time and seasonal employees would also be eligible for coverage with this plan. This went into effect in the city on Jan. 1, 2020.
But if the bill passes through the Corporations Committee and back through the Senate and House of Representatives and is approved by Gov. Mark Gordon, it would mean Casper would have to go back to a self-funded health insurance model, which the city has had since 1984.
There was some contention to this vote, with five senators immediately voting no on it and two changing their votes before it closed.
How individual legislators voted on Tuesday can be reviewed here.