THIRTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2023
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO THE HAWAII EMPLOYER-UNION HEALTH BENEFITS TRUST FUND SPOUSAL MEDICARE PART B PREMIUM REIMBURSEMENT.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that the State and counties reimburse retirees and their spouses for medicare part B premiums, including spouses of retirees hired after June 30, 2001. Employers do not receive any benefit from the enrollment of self-only retiree spouses in medicare part B, since the employers do not contribute to the spouse's premiums. The Hawaii employer-union health benefits trust fund board of trustees estimates that eliminating medicare part B premium reimbursements for spouses of employees hired on or after July 1, 2023, will reduce the State's future annual required contributions by $1.2 billion over a thirty-year period. Current retirees; vested, terminated employees; and current employees will not be impacted by this Act.
SECTION 2. Section 87A-23, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§87A-23 Health benefits plan supplemental to medicare. The board shall establish a health benefits plan, which takes into account benefits available to an employee-beneficiary and spouse under medicare, subject to the following conditions:
(1) There shall be no duplication of benefits payable under medicare. The plan under this section, which shall be secondary to medicare, when combined with medicare and any other plan to which the health benefits plan is subordinate under the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' coordination of benefit rules, shall provide benefits that approximate those provided to a similarly situated beneficiary not eligible for medicare;
(2) The State, through the
department of budget and finance, and the counties, through their respective departments
of finance, shall pay to the fund a contribution equal to an amount not less than
the medicare part B premium, for each of the following who are enrolled in the medicare
part B medical insurance plan: (A) an employee-beneficiary
who is a retired employee, (B) [
an employee-beneficiary's spouse] a spouse
of an employee-beneficiary hired prior to July 1, 2023, while the employee-beneficiary
is living, and (C) an employee-beneficiary's spouse, after the death of the employee-beneficiary,
if the spouse qualifies as an employee-beneficiary. For purposes of this section, a "retired
employee" means retired members of the employees' retirement system; county
pension system; or a police, firefighters, or bandsmen pension system of the State
or a county as set forth in chapter 88. If
the amount reimbursed by the fund under this section is less than the actual cost
of the medicare part B medical insurance plan due to an increase in the medicare
part B medical insurance plan rate, the fund shall reimburse each employee-beneficiary
and [ employee-beneficiary's spouse] spouse of an employee-beneficiary
hired prior to July 1, 2023, for the cost increase within thirty days of the
rate change. Each employee-beneficiary and
employee-beneficiary's spouse who becomes entitled to reimbursement from the fund
for medicare part B premiums after July 1, 2006, shall designate a financial institution
account into which the fund shall be authorized to deposit reimbursements. This method of payment may be waived by the fund
if another method is determined to be more appropriate;
(3) The benefits available under this plan, when combined with benefits available under medicare or any other coverage or plan to which this plan is subordinate under the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' coordination of benefit rules, shall approximate the benefits that would be provided to a similarly situated employee-beneficiary not eligible for medicare;
(4) All employee-beneficiaries or dependent-beneficiaries who are eligible to enroll in the medicare part B medical insurance plan shall enroll in that plan as a condition of receiving contributions and participating in benefits plans under this chapter. This paragraph shall apply to retired employees, their spouses, and the surviving spouses of deceased retirees and employees killed in the performance of duty; and
(5) The board shall determine which of the employee‑beneficiaries and dependent-beneficiaries, who are not enrolled in the medicare part B medical insurance plan, may participate in the plans offered by the fund."
SECTION 3. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.
SECTION 4. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2023.
Hawaii Employer-union Health Benefits Trust Fund; Spousal Medicare Part B Premium Reimbursement
Amends section 87A-23, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to exclude medicare reimbursement by the State and counties for the spouses of retired employees hired after 6/30/2023. (HD1)
The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.