(If this message looks garbled to you or if the headlines in this message don't connect you to Web pages when you click on them, please request the "plain text" version of this newsletter (Welfare Plans Edition) by emailing your request to publisher Dave Baker at davebaker@benefitslink.com)
The BenefitsLink Newsletter -
Welfare Plans Edition

Today's sponsor is EmployeeBenefitsJobs.com
Please support our advertisers
(Would your company like to sponsor an issue?)

July 1 - 5, 2000

Insurers Disappointed in Nonfiduciary Liability Ruling by Supreme Court
Excerpt: "Insurers are expressing disappointment with a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that nonfiduciary parties-in-interest can be sued for violations of the prohibited transactions clause of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act." (National Underwriter Company)

Honeywell Pays Bonsignore Like a Prize Catch
Excerpt: "If a company decides to look outside for a new chief executive, it probably will have to pay through the nose, but for all that extra money it can be selective and demand the best. How about if it picks a candidate from inside but pays the guy like a prize lured from outside?" (Graef Crystal, on Bloomberg.com)

'Tax Avoidance Notice' Barely Affects Most Group Welfare Plans
Excerpt: "The Internal Revenue Service recently sent out a notice that labels welfare benefit plans under Internal Revenue Code Section 419A(f)(6) as 'tax avoidance transactions.' Although IRS Notice 2000-15 cites three areas of temporary and proposed regulations that plan promoters and sponsors should be aware of, compliance should not be onerous, depending on the size of the plan and the scope of the information already maintained." (National Underwriter Company)

A New Generation Redefines Retirement
Excerpt: "The tight labor market means that smart employers will increasingly rely on older workers. Here's how to court them, keep them, and make them happy." (Workforce Online)

The Ten Commandments for HMOs
Excerpt: "If you're thinking of joining an HMO, or of changing from one HMO to another, send out the "TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR HMOs." Ask the HMO to respond with answers. If they don't answer, or if you don't like the answers, DON'T JOIN that HMO." (Elizabeth Charlton Moore)

ERIC Says AMA is Wrong, Bipartisan Managed Care Bill Expands Employer Liability
Excerpt: "In a June 23, 2000 letter to Members of the Senate, E. Ratcliffe Anderson, Jr., M.D., Executive Vice President, CEO of the American Medical Association, grossly misrepresents the effect of the liability provision (§1302) contained in 'Bipartisan Consensus Managed Care Improvement Act of 1999' (H.R. 2990)." (ERISA Industry Committee)

CalPERS Drops Plan to Increase Employee Co-Payments for Prescription Drugs
Excerpt: "The mighty California Public Employees Retirement System rose up this year to beat back its burgeoning health care costs--and got cut down by its own membership. The CalPERS committee that oversees health benefits admitted as much Tuesday when it unanimously moved to abandon plans to increase most members' co-payments for brand-name prescription drugs." (Knight-Ridder / Tribune Business News)

House Vote on Ability of Doctors to Unionize and Bargain With HMOs Follows Pattern of Contributions
Excerpt: "House lawmakers who voted against letting doctors collectively bargain with HMOs got twice as much in campaign donations from the industry as those who sided with physicians, an Associated Press analysis shows." (Toledo Blade)

Elated by Antitrust Triumph, Doctors Take Case to Senate
Excerpt: "Elated with a big victory in the House, doctors opened a campaign today to persuade the Senate to give them an exemption from antitrust laws so they could bargain collectively with insurance companies over fees and other issues." (New York Times; free registration required)

Senate Passes New Patients' Rights Bill
Excerpt: "The legislation passed yesterday contains the Ashcroft external review provisions ensuring that patients get care when they need it, and that medical decisions are made by independent physicians of the appropriate specialty, not by insurance claims adjusters. His provisions would also mandate that HMOs abide by strict timetables and face penalties for non-compliance with findings by independent physician reviewers." (Sen. John Ashcroft's Office, via US Newswire)

House Approves AMA-Backed Antitrust Bill
Excerpt: "The House approved legislation yesterday that would give doctors the power to bargain collectively with health maintenance organizations and other insurers. The bill was backed by a wide spectrum of Republicans and Democrats eager to embrace a plan that supporters said addressed doctors' and patients' complaints about the managed-care industry." (Washington Post)

Full Text of Vermont's Statute on Civil Unions
H. 847, "An Act Relating to Civil Unions." (Vermont Legislature)

House OKs Letting Doctors Bargain with HMOs
Excerpt: "Reflecting a backlash against the influence HMOs now wield in American medicine, the U.S. House passed a bill early on Friday that would allow physicians to bargain collectively with health plans." (Reuters via news.excite.com)

HR 1304 (Campbell-Conyers Bill) Passes House; Physicians Would Be Permitted to Unionize
Excerpt: "Yesterday in one of the AMA's most active and significant days on Capitol Hill in recent memory, organized medicine scored a tremendous victory for physicians' rights when the House passed the 'Quality Health Care Coalition Act of 1999' (HR 1304)." (American Medical Association)

BenefitsLink Now Running on New, Faster Server
We're happy to report that our weekend upgrade to a new, faster server is complete. The old server got bogged down a couple of times each day. The upgrade should be transparent to you. If you encounter any trouble connecting, please contact davebaker@benefitslink.com (BenefitsLink)

Subscribe to the Retirement Plans Edition, too (click)
Copyright 2000 BenefitsLink.com, Inc.

Feel free to forward this email to friends, colleagues or clients, if no fee is paid to you and the email is forwarded in its entirety. Thanks!

BenefitsLink is a trademark of BenefitsLink.com, Inc., published by Dave Baker with much help from Mary Hall and lots of friends.

To subscribe (free): visit https://benefitslink.com/newsletter - or the person desiring to subscribe can send an email to listmanager@postmastergeneral.com, with this as the subject of the email: subscribe BLwelfare

We have an online archive of prior issues at
BenefitsLink logo
Looking for a speaker for your benefits group? Want to throw your hat into the ring? Free.

Need personnel? It's like fishing in a barrel here.

Need a benefits job? Sort the openings by their distance away from you.

Exchange questions and tips with colleagues. Co-sponsored by us and several employee benefits organizations.

Promotions and new personnel in the employee benefits community.

Experts field questions online, submitted by readers via email.

View by location, by sponsoring organization, or by date.

Largest listing of benefits software on the net: descriptions, downloads.

Ads are our sole source of support. No subscription fees!


Copyright 2000 BenefitsLink.com, Inc. All rights reserved. BenefitsLink is a trademark of BenefitsLink.com, Inc.