Employee Relations 05/17/2013
US Department of Labor Issues Guidance on the Requirement to Notify Employees of Healthcare Coverage Options
The Affordable Care Act creates a new Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) section 18B that requires employers give notice to employees of coverage options available through the Health Insurance Marketplace (Marketplace), previously called the Health Benefit Exchange. In California the Health Benefit Exchange is called Covered California. Pursuant to new guidance issued on May 8, 2013, employers are required to provide the notice to each new employee at the time of hiring beginning October 1, 2013. For 2014, the Department will consider a notice to be provided at the time of hiring if the notice is provided within 14 days of an employee’s start date. For employees who are current employees before October 1, 2013, employers are required to provide the notice not later than October 1, 2013. The notice is required to be provided automatically, free of charge.
The notice must be provided in writing. It may be provided by first-class mail or it may be provided electronically if the requirements of the Department of Labor’s electronic disclosure safe harbor are met. The notice must do the following:
- Inform the employee of the existence of the Marketplace, including a description of the services provided by the Marketplace, and the manner in which the employee may contact the Marketplace to request assistance;
- Inform the employees that if the employer plan’s share of the total allowed costs of benefits provided under the plan is less than 60 percent of such costs, the employee may be eligible for a premium tax credit if the employee purchases a qualified health plan through the Marketplace; and
- Inform the employee that if he or she purchases a qualified health plan through the Marketplace, the employee may lose the employer contribution (if any) to any health benefits plan offered by the employer and that all or a portion of such contribution may be excludable from income for Federal income tax purposes.
Model notices are available here.
SB 313 (de Leon) - Oppose
As Amended on April 24, 2013
Senate Bill 313, by Senator Kevin de Leon, would prohibit a public agency from taking punitive action against a public safety officer, or denying promotion on grounds other than merit, because that officer’s name is placed on a Brady list. The Brady list is any system, index, list, or other record containing the names of peace officers whose personnel files are likely to contain evidence of dishonesty or bias, which is maintained by a prosecutorial agency or office in accordance with the holding in Brady v. Maryland.
SB 313 would, however, allow a public agency to take punitive or personnel action against a public safety officer based on the underlying acts or omissions for which that officer’s name was placed on the Brady list, but prohibits the introduction of any evidence that an officer’s name was placed on a Brady list in any administrative appeal of a punitive action.
CSAC is concerned that SB 313 could restrict management’s ability to appropriately discipline peace officers. SB 313 will be heard in the Senate Appropriations Committee on May 20.