Montana Code Annotated 2021

TITLE 2. GOVERNMENT STRUCTURE AND ADMINISTRATION

CHAPTER 18. STATE EMPLOYEE CLASSIFICATION, COMPENSATION, AND BENEFITS

Part 7. Group Insurance Generally

Contributions

2-18-703. (Temporary) Contributions. (1) Except as provided in subsection (2)(f), each agency, as defined in 2-18-601, and the state compensation insurance fund shall contribute the amount specified in this section toward the group benefits cost.

(2) (a) Except as provided in subsection (2)(b), for employees defined in 2-18-701 and for members of the legislature, the employer contribution for group benefits is $1,054 a month.

(b) For employees defined in 2-18-701 and for members of the legislature, beginning January 2020 and for each succeeding month, the cost of group benefits, including both the employer and employee contributions for group benefits and health flexible spending accounts, may not exceed the monthly amount for self-only coverage and coverage other than self-only that will trigger the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I, including any cost-of-living adjustments under 26 U.S.C. 4980I. This section limits contributions for group benefits only to the extent needed to avoid triggering the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I.

(c) Except as provided in subsection (2)(d), for employees of the Montana university system, the employer contribution for group benefits is $1,054 a month.

(d) For employees of the Montana university system, beginning the earlier of July 2020 or the first month in 2020 in which the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I applies, and for each succeeding month, the cost of group benefits, including both the employer and employee contributions for group benefits and health flexible spending accounts, may not exceed the monthly amount for self-only coverage and coverage other than self-only that will trigger the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I, including any cost-of-living adjustments under 26 U.S.C. 4980I. This section limits contributions for group benefits only to the extent needed to avoid triggering the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I.

(e) (i) If a state employee is terminated to achieve a reduction in force, the continuation of contributions for group benefits beyond the termination date is subject to negotiation under 39-31-305 and to the protections of 2-18-1205. Permanent part-time, seasonal part-time, and temporary part-time employees who are regularly scheduled to work less than 20 hours a week are not eligible for the group benefit contribution. An employee who elects not to be covered by a state-sponsored group benefit plan may not receive the state contribution. A portion of the employer contribution for group benefits may be applied to an employee's costs for participation in Part B of medicare under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, as amended, if the state group benefit plan is the secondary payer and medicare the primary payer.

(ii) Payments required under this subsection (2)(e) may be suspended if a state agency or unit of the Montana university system is directed to suspend the employer contribution for the state employee group benefit plan or university system group benefit plan pursuant to subsection (2)(f).

(f) The approving authority, as defined in 17-7-102, shall direct a state agency or unit of the Montana university system to suspend the employer contribution for the state employee group benefit plan or university system group benefit plan described in subsections (1) and (2)(a) through (2)(d) for a period of up to 2 months.

(3) For employees of elementary and high school districts, the employer's contributions may exceed but may not be less than $10 a month.

(4) (a) For employees of political subdivisions, as defined in 2-9-101, except school districts, the employer's contributions may exceed but may not be less than $10 a month.

(b) Subject to the public hearing requirement provided in 2-9-212(2)(b), the amount in excess of the base contribution of a local government's property tax levy for contributions for group benefits as determined in subsection (4)(c) is not subject to the mill levy calculation limitation provided for in 15-10-420.

(c) (i) Subject to subsections (4)(c)(ii) and (4)(c)(iii), the base contribution is determined by multiplying the average annual contribution for each employee on July 1, 1999, times the number of employees for whom the employer makes contributions for group benefits under 2-9-212 on July 1 of each fiscal year.

(ii) If a political subdivision did not make contributions for group benefits on or before July 1, 1999, and subsequently does so, the base contribution is determined by multiplying the average annual contribution for each employee in the first year the political subdivision provides contributions for group benefits times the number of employees for whom the employer makes contributions for group benefits under 2-9-212 on July 1 of each fiscal year.

(iii) If a political subdivision has made contributions for group benefits but has not previously levied for contributions in excess of the base contribution, the political subdivision's base is determined by multiplying the average annual contribution for each employee at the beginning of the fiscal year immediately preceding the year in which the levy will first be levied times the number of employees for whom the employer made contributions for group benefits under 2-9-212 in that fiscal year.

(5) Unused employer contributions for any state employee must be transferred to an account established for this purpose by the department of administration and upon transfer may be used to offset losses occurring to the group of which the employee is eligible to be a member.

(6) Unused employer contributions for any government employee may be transferred to an account established for this purpose by a self-insured government and upon transfer may be used to offset losses occurring to the group of which the employee is eligible to be a member or to increase the reserves of the group.

(7) The laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of marital status in Title 49 do not prohibit bona fide group insurance plans from providing greater or additional contributions for insurance benefits to employees with dependents than to employees without dependents or with fewer dependents. (Terminates June 30, 2022--sec. 5, Ch. 51, L. 2021.)

2-18-703. (Effective July 1, 2022) Contributions. (1) Each agency, as defined in 2-18-601, and the state compensation insurance fund shall contribute the amount specified in this section toward the group benefits cost.

(2) (a) Except as provided in subsection (2)(b), for employees defined in 2-18-701 and for members of the legislature, the employer contribution for group benefits is $1,054 a month.

(b) For employees defined in 2-18-701 and for members of the legislature, beginning January 2020 and for each succeeding month, the cost of group benefits, including both the employer and employee contributions for group benefits and health flexible spending accounts, may not exceed the monthly amount for self-only coverage and coverage other than self-only that will trigger the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I, including any cost-of-living adjustments under 26 U.S.C. 4980I. This section limits contributions for group benefits only to the extent needed to avoid triggering the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I.

(c) Except as provided in subsection (2)(d), for employees of the Montana university system, the employer contribution for group benefits is $1,054 a month.

(d) For employees of the Montana university system, beginning the earlier of July 2020 or the first month in 2020 in which the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I applies, and for each succeeding month, the cost of group benefits, including both the employer and employee contributions for group benefits and health flexible spending accounts, may not exceed the monthly amount for self-only coverage and coverage other than self-only that will trigger the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I, including any cost-of-living adjustments under 26 U.S.C. 4980I. This section limits contributions for group benefits only to the extent needed to avoid triggering the excise tax under 26 U.S.C. 4980I.

(e) If a state employee is terminated to achieve a reduction in force, the continuation of contributions for group benefits beyond the termination date is subject to negotiation under 39-31-305 and to the protections of 2-18-1205. Permanent part-time, seasonal part-time, and temporary part-time employees who are regularly scheduled to work less than 20 hours a week are not eligible for the group benefit contribution. An employee who elects not to be covered by a state-sponsored group benefit plan may not receive the state contribution. A portion of the employer contribution for group benefits may be applied to an employee's costs for participation in Part B of medicare under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, as amended, if the state group benefit plan is the secondary payer and medicare the primary payer.

(3) For employees of elementary and high school districts, the employer's contributions may exceed but may not be less than $10 a month.

(4) (a) For employees of political subdivisions, as defined in 2-9-101, except school districts, the employer's contributions may exceed but may not be less than $10 a month.

(b) Subject to the public hearing requirement provided in 2-9-212(2)(b), the amount in excess of the base contribution of a local government's property tax levy for contributions for group benefits as determined in subsection (4)(c) is not subject to the mill levy calculation limitation provided for in 15-10-420.

(c) (i) Subject to subsections (4)(c)(ii) and (4)(c)(iii), the base contribution is determined by multiplying the average annual contribution for each employee on July 1, 1999, times the number of employees for whom the employer makes contributions for group benefits under 2-9-212 on July 1 of each fiscal year.

(ii) If a political subdivision did not make contributions for group benefits on or before July 1, 1999, and subsequently does so, the base contribution is determined by multiplying the average annual contribution for each employee in the first year the political subdivision provides contributions for group benefits times the number of employees for whom the employer makes contributions for group benefits under 2-9-212 on July 1 of each fiscal year.

(iii) If a political subdivision has made contributions for group benefits but has not previously levied for contributions in excess of the base contribution, the political subdivision's base is determined by multiplying the average annual contribution for each employee at the beginning of the fiscal year immediately preceding the year in which the levy will first be levied times the number of employees for whom the employer made contributions for group benefits under 2-9-212 in that fiscal year.

(5) Unused employer contributions for any state employee must be transferred to an account established for this purpose by the department of administration and upon transfer may be used to offset losses occurring to the group of which the employee is eligible to be a member.

(6) Unused employer contributions for any government employee may be transferred to an account established for this purpose by a self-insured government and upon transfer may be used to offset losses occurring to the group of which the employee is eligible to be a member or to increase the reserves of the group.

(7) The laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of marital status in Title 49 do not prohibit bona fide group insurance plans from providing greater or additional contributions for insurance benefits to employees with dependents than to employees without dependents or with fewer dependents.

History: En. Sec. 1, Ch. 174, L. 1957; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 83, L. 1965; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 200, L. 1967; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 220, L. 1969; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 382, L. 1971; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 188, L. 1974; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 359, L. 1975; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 437, L. 1975; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 259, L. 1977; amd. Sec. 11, Ch. 563, L. 1977; R.C.M. 1947, 11-1024(2); amd. Sec. 13, Ch. 678, L. 1979; amd. Sec. 8, Ch. 421, L. 1981; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 207, L. 1983; amd. Sec. 11, Ch. 710, L. 1983; amd. Sec. 8, Ch. 740, L. 1985; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 370, L. 1987; amd. Sec. 10, Ch. 661, L. 1987; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 171, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 11, Ch. 660, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 171, L. 1991; amd. Sec. 10, Ch. 720, L. 1991; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 758, L. 1991; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 13, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 9, Ch. 640, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 12, Ch. 455, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 10, Ch. 417, L. 1997; amd. Sec. 9, Ch. 558, L. 1999; amd. Sec. 4, Ch. 314, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 511, L. 2001; amd. Secs. 6, 9, Ch. 553, L. 2001; amd. Secs. 2, 4, Ch. 529, L. 2003; amd. Sec. 6, Ch. 552, L. 2003; amd. Sec. 5, Ch. 6, L. 2005; amd. Sec. 13, Ch. 81, L. 2007; amd. Sec. 5, Ch. 7, L. 2009; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 412, L. 2009; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 385, L. 2013; amd. Sec. 7, Ch. 438, L. 2015; amd. Sec. 4, Ch. 175, L. 2017; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 3, Sp. L. November 2017; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 85, L. 2019; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 51, L. 2021.