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February 7, 2008

Here are the Web's best new links about compliance and cost aspects of plan operation, design and policy.

Today's sponsor is BeneCom Associates, LLC

(Click on company name or banner to learn more.)
Banner ad for BeneCom Associates, LLC

"Benefits statements are terrific education tools. Now, they're budget-friendly, too."

If you're looking for a low-cost approach to communicating the value of your benefits, BeneCom Associates, LLC can help. Our "preformatted," customized and online approaches to benefit statements are attractive, very reasonably priced and used by employers across the country who thought benefits statements were financially out of reach.

To find out how little benefits statements can cost and how they can help your organization, call (860) 674-2626 or visit us at

Audio - Consumer-Driven Health Care Plans Hit Obstacles
Excerpt: "A small company in New Hampshire provided 'consumer-driven health plans' to about 7,000 people, before it had to be assumed by a larger insurer. Those plans typically have high deductibles and some form of tax-advantaged health savings account." (All Things Considered via National Public Radio)

Mental Health Parity Extension Legislation, H.R. 4848 (PDF)
5 pages. Excerpt: "To extend for one year parity in the application of certain limits to mental health benefits, and for other purposes." (U.S. House of Representatives via American Benefits Council)

Minnesota Health Care Transformation Task Force Recommendations (PDF)
79 pages. Excerpt from a critical evaluation of the report: 'The 2007 legislature required Governor Tim Pawlenty to 'convene a Health Care Transformation Task Force to advise and assist the governor regarding activities to transform the health care system, and to develop a statewide action plan... for transforming the health care system to improve affordability, quality, access, and the health status of Minnesotans.' The overarching goal of the plan was to reduce health care spending by 20 percent by January 2011 -- three years from now." (State of Minnesota)

[Opinion] The Future of Employment-Based Health Benefits - Will Employers Reach a Tipping Point? (PDF)
Pages 1-8 of 12 pages. Excerpt: "This article summarizes discussion at the Employee Benefit Research Institute's December 2007 policy forum, which sought to assess reports that the U.S. employment-based health benefits system has reached a 'tipping point' because of ever-rising costs, with employers entering a period of fundamental change in providing health benefits to workers." (Employee Benefit Research Institute)

[Opinion] Saying No to CoerciveCare
Excerpt: "On Monday, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's 'universal' health-care plan was shot down by a committee in the state's Senate, 7-1. The most vociferous opponents were not fiscal conservatives, but labor unions that launched a last-minute revolt against its most crucial feature: an individual mandate that would have forced everyone to buy coverage.' (The Wall Street Journal)

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

[Guidance Overview] The International Implications of §409A and its Impact on Multinational Companies
6 pages. Excerpt: "Deferred compensation arrangements issued by foreign-owned operations or by US companies with operations abroad were not originally exempt from the application of #167;409A. However, under proposed and now final regulations issued by the IRS, there are exemptions that apply which are geared towards limiting the effect of #167;409A on non-resident aliens and US citizens or residents who participate in non-US plans." (Benefits & Compensation International via Faegre & Benson LLP)

Chart Showing Compensation Costs in State and Local Government Up 4.1 Percent in 2007
Excerpt: "Benefit costs increased 5.5 percent for the 12-month period ended December 2007 compared to 5.2 percent for the previous year." (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

National Conference - "Putting Process Into Practice"
in North Carolina on May 7, 2008
presented by Fiduciary360 (fi360)

Pension Focus 2008
in Missouri on May 15, 2008
presented by Pension Focus

SIFMA Savings and Retirement Conference
in District of Columbia on February 28, 2008
presented by SIFMA Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association

Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

BenefitStreet Names Jerry Bramlett Chief Executive Officer
BenefitStreet, Inc.

401kDIRECT Creates CIF Marketplace - Open for All

More Than Money; Survey Finds Salary Is Top Draw for Job Candidates but Benefits Nearly as Popular
Robert Half International

We're one of the top 350 employment sites on the web!Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
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Vice President - Institutional Sales
for Eagle Asset Management

401(k) Administrator
for TSP Associates, Inc.
in CA

Account/Client Service Manager (TPA) - Las Vegas
for Zenith Administrators
in NV

Sales Representative
for SunGard Inc.
in FL

Education Specialist
for Citi
in NJ

Lead Benefit Systems Analyst
for Citi
in FL

Institutional Services Employee Benefit Operations Administration Analyst II
for BB&T
in SC

Associate Director Of Marketing
for Emeriti Retirement Health Solutions
in NY

Vice President, Client Services
for Sentinel Benefits Group
in MA

Senior Benefit Plan Administrator
for M Benefit Solutions
in OR

Senior Vice President - Implementation Services
for CitiStreet
in MA

CRTNJ - Communications Manager
for CitiStreet
in NJ

Plan Consultant Opportunity
for Weaver Partners, Inc.

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