The City of Columbus offers a variety of benefit options to full-time employees (Full-time employees are those who work 30 or more hours per week and are classified as full-time), which include:
- Two (2) medical plan options (including prescription coverage);
- Vision and dental plan options
- Health savings account, which includes bi-annual City contribution for employees who choose the High Deductible Health Plan option;
- Flexible spending accounts – health care, dependent, and limited options;
- Deferred compensation 457(b) account option;
- Fully funded defined pension plan through the State of Indiana (PERF) (Utilities employees have a different 403(b) plan that is also fully funded by the department and a defined pension);
- A robust, comprehensive program of leave policies (Fire & Police have different leave policies) covering a variety of employee needs, including but not limited to:
- 80 hours of paid vacation leave after one year;
- 16 hours of paid personal leave available yearly;
- 48 hours of sick leave, which can accrue/carry over;
- 15 paid holidays, 17 on election years;
- City-paid life insurance, with the option to buy more life insurance for employee, spouse, or children;
- City-paid long-term disability insurance (non-sworn);
- City-paid short-term disability insurance (non-sworn);
- Employee assistance program that allows for covered behavior health visits;
- Qualified employer for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.
The City of Columbus is committed to offering and maintaining a competitive Health Insurance benefits package to support employees and their families. These benefits are an important piece of a full-time employee’s total compensation.
How to Enroll
New full-time employees will meet with Human Resources on their first day of work. HR will guide employees through the online enrollment process quickly and easily through the Employee Self Services (ESS) portal. Employees will also use the ESS portal when requesting a Life Event Change of Benefits and during Open Enrollment.
The City has a “Working Spouse Rule” that restricts health coverage when a spouse has employer-sponsored, credible coverage. The purpose of the “Working Spouse Rule” is to share the cost of the medical expenses with other plans or insurance carriers when an employee’s spouse is eligible for medical coverage where the spouse is employed.
In order to cover a spouse who qualifies for health insurance on the employee’s plan, employees will need to complete the Spouse Employment Verification form annually.
Qualifying Life Events
It is important to make informed choices with benefits selections. Changing coverage during the year is limited to Qualifying Life Events as defined by IRS code Section 125. The rules do not allow for enrollment, additions, changes, or cancellations to most plans without a Qualifying Life Event.
Summary of Available Coverage (please click each link for additional information)
- The City offers a choice between two health insurance plans – the Preferred Provider Plan (PPO) and the High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP).
- Flexible Spending Accounts
- Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow employees to save for qualified expenses before taxes are taken from their pay. There are three types of Flex accounts available – Health Care and Dependent Care for employees on the Preferred Provider Plan (or no plan) and the Limited Purpose Flex for employees on the High Deductible plan.
- Additionally, the Medical Flex and Dependent Care Flex are available to employees who do not elect health insurance with the City.
- Health Savings Account
- Health Savings Accounts (HSA) allow employees to save for qualified expenses before taxes are taken from their pay. The HSA is only available to employees on the High Deductible Plan.
- Prescription Drugs
- The prescription drug benefit is included as part of the medical coverage. Each health plan has different co-pays for prescriptions in the store and through the mail. Some maintenance medications are at no cost to employees.
- Employees have the option of two different dental plans – high and low. Each option has in-network and out-of-network providers.
- Employees have the option of two different vision plans – VSP and Davis. Each option has in-network and out-of-network providers.
- Basic Life Insurance
- The City provides Basic Life and AD&D insurance to all full-time employees at no cost to employees.
- Voluntary Life Insurance
- Employees can purchase additional life insurance on their first day of employment. Employees can choose $20,000 up to $100,000 with no medical questions asked. If Employees elect this supplemental life insurance, they can also choose spouse and/or child coverage as well.
- Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
- The Employee Assistance Program offers employees and their families six (6) confidential, no-cost to employees sessions a year with certified counselors.
- Aflac coverages can be elected by contacting the City’s Aflac representative.