By David Howell
WATER VALLEY–A change in the county’s healthcare provider for 60-plus employees will save tax payers over $100,000 in 2014.
Three insurance agents quoted different plans to best meet the needs of county employees and Leslie Smith and Associates won the business. Smith beat out Alan Tanquay, who had served as the county’s health insurance agent for almost a decade.
“It’s no reflection on anybody, we are looking about what best suits the county right now,” Board President Tommy Vaughn told the three agents as they studied the proposals before making the final decision. The decision was made at a recessed meeting last Thursday in a 5-0 vote.
The change is also expected to give the county’s work pool better insurance coverage with the switch to Blue Cross/Blue Shield from Humana, and takes effect in January. Like the current policy, the new policy uses a secondary gap insurance policy in conjunction with main provider. The monthly premium will cost $36,000 per month.
The change takes effect January 1 and county employees and elected officials attended a meeting Tuesday morning at the Multi-purpose Building to facilitate the switch.
With the savings, supervisors also elected to provide dental insurance, an option the employees had paid for in the past if they wanted it.
The dental insurance cost approximately $1,200 per month to cover the 64 employees.
“You are saving $108,000 that’s still a considerable savings,” Smith reminded supervisors, referring to the extra $14,000 a year the dental insurance will cost. The county also provides a $15,000 life insurance policy for each employee as part of the insurance benefits each year.
Other business discussed at the earlier Dec. 2 meeting included:
• Reappointed Lucious Ingram as the District Four Hospital Board appointment. District Four Super-visor George Suggs made the motion for Ingram’s appointment.
• Reappointed Gail Barton to the Yalobusha County Library System that serves Coffeeville and Oakland.
• Approved the advertisement for bids and commodities for the coming year. The request for bids appears on Page 11 of the Herald.
• Set the holiday scheduled for Christmas and New Years. Chancery Clerk Amy McMinn said the county will be closed by state law on Dec. 25 and Jan. 1. Supervisors had to approve an additional day, Christmas Eve.
• Accepted the 2014 mobile home tax roll presented by Tax Asses-sor/Collector Linda Shuf-field. The roll includes 251 mobile homes located both in the county and municipalities, Shuffield explained. The total assessed value was $249,766 for the mobile homes only, not including the land.
• Heard a request from Sheriff Lance Humphreys to purchase a new patrol car. Humphreys said one of the older Dodge Chargers was taken out of service after the motor went bad. Humph-reys said the car had 205,000 miles on it and likely was not worth repairing.
• Heard from Oxford Lafayette Humane Society Executive Director Jennifer Peterman about the number of dogs and cats her shelter receives from Yalobusha County. Peterman said the Lafayette County Super-visors had asked her to visit with supervisors from surrounding counties regarding future funding for the facility.
“I am not asking for anything today, I am just letting you know what the 2012 numbers were that came to the shelter. In the springtime I would like to come back and talk about the 2013 numbers,” she explained.
Citing Yalobusha statistics in 2012, Peterman said the shelter received 481 animals including dogs and cats. Of that number, 334 were owner surrenders and 147 were strays.
Peterman added that it costs just under $100 to house a cat for 10 days, including vaccinations. It costs just over $100 to for housing a dog.
• Scheduled a recessed meeting for Friday, Decem-ber 20 at 9 a.m. at the Water Valley courthouse.