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July 7, 2006
Today's sponsor: The Center for Tax Law and Employee Benefits at The John Marshall Law School

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Banner ad for The Center for Tax Law and Employee Benefits at The John Marshall Law School

You Have the Potential. We Have the Programs.

Are you working in human resources? Are you dealing with health insurance plans or pension benefits? Learn how you can broaden your experience with an M.S. degree (for non-lawyers) or LL.M degree (for attorneys) in employee benefits from The John Marshall Law School in Chicago during an information session from 5 to 7 p.m., Wednesday, August 2. Learn how these unique programs can help advance your career.

(Please visit our sponsors. We try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)

Employers Push Healthy Eating in the Office
Excerpt: "Forget about candy bars in the office vending machines. Employers are ditching junk food and other calorie-laden fare and offering healthier items instead. Some companies are growing vegetables on corporate campuses, charging employees more for fatty foods or banning cakes and sweets at company celebrations -- mirroring the trend set by elementary and high schools to limit unhealthy foods." (USA TODAY)

Can the Massachusetts Health Insurance Plan Stay Solvent?
Excerpt: "Rapidly rising healthcare costs threaten to bankrupt the universal coverage plan recently enacted in Massachusetts, a new study says. 'Massachusetts healthcare is addicted to more money for business as usual,' said study author Alan Sager, director of the health reform program at the Boston University School of Public Health." (United Press International)

Senators Smith and Wyden Join Forces to Push for Catastrophic Health Coverage
Excerpt: "U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Gordon Smith are ... putting their clout behind legislation to provide health insurance for uninsured Americans and those facing catastrophic health care costs." (The Register-Guard)

Pennsylvania Employers Get Tax Break for Paid Donor Leave
Excerpt: "Pennsylvania employers providing paid time off to employees who donate bone morrow or organs will be eligible for tax credits under legislation, H.B. 153, signed into law this week by Gov. Edward G. Rendell." (Business Insurance)

Rethinking Pharmacy Benefit Design to Reduce the Burden on the Healthcare System (PDF)
24 pages. Excerpt: "This is intended for corporate medical directors, employee benefit managers, health plan medical directors, [and] benefit design experts ... Innovative health benefit design strategies must be developed and applied to therapeutic areas [for cardiovascular disease] responsible for the greatest impact on healthcare expenditures and employee productivity." (Journal of Managed Care Medicine)

NEJM Article Examines Implications of Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance
Excerpt: "According to [the author], although employer-sponsored health insurance has proved beneficial in many areas, it has been unable to slow increases in health care costs and seems unprepared to do so in the future (Blumenthal, NEJM, 7/6)." (Kaiser Family Foundation)

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

Accting for Def Comp and Postretirement Benefit Aspects of Endorsement Split-Dollar Life Ins. (PDF)
5 pages. Excerpt: "This draft abstract for EITF Issue No. 06-4, 'Accounting for Deferred Compensation and Postretirement Benefit Aspects of Endorsement Split-Dollar Life Insurance Arrangements,' addresses the following issue: Whether the postretirement benefit associated with an endorsement split-dollar life insurance arrangement is effectively settled in accordance with either Statement 106 or Opinion 12 upon entering into such an arrangement." (Financial Accounting Standards Board)

Overviews of Employee Benefits Developments, June 2006
This edition includes short overviews of assorted topics: PBGC requires electronic filing of premium declarations; IRS completes EPCRS overhaul; DOL expands and simplifies voluntary fiduciary correction program; DOL publishes guidance on mutual fund settlement proceeds; What it means to be an unfunded 'top hat' deferred compensation plan; A Severance Plan Casel; and, Supreme Court validates ERISA health plan reimbursement provision. (Hodgson Russ LLP)

Almost Half of Firms Noncompliant with Form 5500, According to Poll
Excerpt: "Employers are getting poor scores in at least one area of legal compliance. About 47% of companies did not file Form 5500 as required by federal authorities in 2003, according to Corporate Synergies, which polled 74,000 employers." (BenefitNews Connect)

Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

2006 "Best Benefits Practices" Conference
in Massachusetts on December 7, 2006
presented by New England Employee Benefits Council

Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

CitiStreet Establishes Data Management Group
(CitiStreet) Announces Release of Batch Amendment Module

Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
Post a Help Wanted Ad

Enrolled Actuary
for Summit Benefit & Actuarial Services, Inc.
in OR, WI

Operations Specialist
for PenCal Administrators, Inc.
in CA

Deputy Human Resources Director
for The County of Riverside
in CA

Account Manager, Employee Benefits
for ABD Insurance and Financial Services
in CA

Compliance Analyst
for National Automobile Dealers Associationsí
in VA

in IL

Asset/Liability Management Analyst (APL/PTS)
for Great-West Corporate
in CO

OmniScript Analyst
in CO, NC

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