Greenville city officials increase cost of employee healthcare, dental stays flat

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) -The Greenville City Council and Greenville Utilities Commission came together Monday night for a joint meeting to address employee health and dental insurance benefits.

The joint City-GUC Pay & Benefits Committee unanimously voted to adopt proposed changes during the meeting, which included an increase in health insurance costs by five percent for employees covered by themselves and an 11 percent increase for those with a spouse or dependents. Dental coverage stayed the same.

Greenville Mayor P.J. Connelly said the city has tried hard to budget both expenses over the last few years, but inflation impacted that effort.

“We’ve done a really good with budgeting over the last three years not having any increase, unfortunately we’ve had more bills that have come in, and now we have to raise it up slightly,” Connelly said. “I think the fact that the dental is staying at the same level that it is right now is a positive.”

The last increase in employee medical and dental contributions was back in 2019. Greenville Human Resources Director Leah Futrell said they’ve tried to keep it as reasonable as possible.

“The thing is we’ve tried to balance it so that it’s not so much of a burden because inflation is rampant, and it’s no different than the healthcare arena,” Futrell said. “We’ve tried to mitigate it to the extent that we can so that the increases are as low as possible.”

The joint committee also talked about raising pay for their employees.

Futrell said in order for the city and GUC to continue thriving, they have to make sure employees are a priority.

“What we are trying to do is ensure that we’re paying employees competitively, that the council and GUC board commissioners have adopted an at-mark pay philosophy so we try to ensure to the extent that we can,” Futrell said. “That our pay plan is at mark.”

Mayor Connelly said the city and GUC are both excited about the dental insurance remaining the same especially with inflation hitting like it is. There were no changes passed in terms of employee pay on Monday. Health insurance changes will go into effect on January 1, 2023.

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