The BAC membership is composed of staff, faculty, and retirees of the University who are eligible for University benefits and include voting, non-voting and ex-officio members. The voting members of the BAC include the chair and four representatives from each of the non-represented employees group— faculty, P&A, civil service—as well as two retirees. The non-voting members of the committee, to the extent permitted by applicable labor law, include one representative from each of the bargaining units that receive (or plan to receive) benefits through the UPlan. The ex-officio members of the committee are employees who have been appointed by virtue of their position.
MISSION AND SCOPE
The Benefits Advisory Committee (BAC) will advise the Administrative Working Group (AWG) and the vice president for human resources (or designee) on benefit offerings common to non-represented employee groups (specifically excluding the Faculty Retirement Plan, the Optional Retirement Plan, MSRS, faculty group disability, and faculty group life insurance). The BAC will collaborate with the benefits advisory committees of the several represented groups on issues of common interest.
The BAC will act in an advisory capacity to the AWG and the vice president of human resources (or designee) within the assigned scope. Committee recommendations will not be binding on the administration, but the expectation is that the views of the committee will have an important influence on policies and procedures related to matters within the mission and scope of the BAC. Administrators remain responsible to and accountable to the President of the University. The members of the committee should report to and seek the views of the employee group that nominated them.
The BAC shall:
- periodically recommend changes to existing programs, or new programs, to address:
- any changes in laws and regulations;
- the need to coordinate with other insurance pools;
- the needs of faculty, P & A and civil service staffs; and
- competitive conditions; institutional priorities and constraints.
- regularly review the financial status of benefits programs, recommend measures for maintaining fiscal balance of the fringe benefits and give appropriate advice on these matters to the AWG and the vice president of human resources (or designee);
- provide advice to the AWG and vice president of human resources (or designee) on relevant administrative and procedural matters and on communications of ideas and suggestions concerning coverage, eligibility, claims, procedures, bidding, administration, and other aspects of employee issues concerning benefits within the scope and mission of the BAC;
- monitor benefit plans to ensure they are of high quality and in stable financial condition, provide information to the AWG and the vice president of human resources (or designee) with respect to them;
- review the effects of policies on University benefit costs and on faculty and staff enrollment patterns, provide information on these matters to the AWG and the vice president of human resources (or designee);
- advise the vice president of human resources (or designee) in the formulation of Requests for Information and Requests for Proposals and in the evaluation of responses to them, and make recommendations regarding providers and benefit features of benefit plans to the vice president of human resources (or designee);
- nominate from among the BAC membership at least 3 persons to be appointed to represent University employees in any RFP or similar process; and
- nominate from among the BAC voting membership, but not a member of a labor represented group, two persons to be appointed to represent the BAC on the AWG.
In presenting the advice of the committee, the Chair shall report the vote and also summarize the majority and minority positions.
- Membership. Membership of the BAC is restricted to staff, faculty and retirees of the University who are eligible for University benefits. The BAC will consist of the following members:
- Voting Members: The voting membership of the BAC shall be composed of a chair, four (4) faculty, four (4) P & A, four (4) civil service, one (1) UEA and two (2) retirees.
- Non-voting Members: Labor represented units that receive (or plan to receive) benefits through the same group plan may, to the extent permitted by applicable labor law, each choose to send one (1) representative to the committee. These groups include 1): Teamsters Local 320; 2). AFSCME Locals 3800 & 3801 (Clerical); 3). AFSCME Locals 3801 and 3937 (Technical); and 4). AFSCME Local 3260 (Health Care).
- Ex Officio Members (Non-voting): Ex officio members of the committee shall include the Senior Vice President of Health Sciences (or designee), the Vice President of Human Resources (or designee), the Director of Employee Benefits (or designee) and other appropriate staff from said offices. The chair of BAC has the authority to appoint additional ex officio members to the committee.
- Conflict of Interest: A member who has a relationship (other than the receipt of benefits under the University plans) that allows him or her to derive a financial or professional benefit must disclose that relationship to the committee and must abstain from voting on any issue directly related to that interest.
- Restricted Session and Executive Session: Voting members of the BAC may call restricted sessions and/or executive sessions. A restricted session of the BAC shall consist of the voting and non-voting members of the BAC. An executive session of the BAC shall consist of the voting members of the BAC.
SELECTION OF MEMBERS
- Selection of Voting Members. The representative committee of each employee group (i.e., the Faculty Consultative Committee, the P&A Consultative Committee, and the Civil Service Consultative Committee) shall each present a slate of at least two (2) candidates for each vacant position representing that employee group. Each group shall select its slate of candidates according to the rules and procedures of that employee group. Nominations for vacant retiree positions may be made by the University of Minnesota Retirees Association and by the representative employee groups.
In order to assure balanced representation, the chairperson (or the acting chairperson) of the BAC and the chairpersons of the three representative groups shall jointly select members from the lists of candidates each group has submitted. In making the choices, the selectors will seek to assure that each campus is represented and that the BAC includes members with experience or knowledge of insurance and benefit issues as well as members representative of the entire University community population.
- Selection of Other Members. Labor represented representatives will be chosen by their respective unions.
- Terms. Members will be appointed to four (4) year staggered terms. Each employee group may determine whether a member from that group may be eligible to serve more than one term. Terms will run from July 1 through June 30.
- Selection of Chairperson. The Committee will select its own Chairperson, who will serve for a two (2) year term, beginning on July 1. The Chair need not be a member of the BAC at the time of election, but may not be a member of a labor represented group. Because the Chairperson should be representative of all employees without regard to employee group, he or she will relinquish any representative seat on the BAC on becoming Chair or Chair-Elect. The election will be in September or October of the year before the beginning of the term, so that the Chair-elect may arrange schedules and other duties so as to be able to perform the functions of office. The Chair-elect shall be an additional voting member. A Chair of the BAC may be reelected.
- Vice-Chairperson. The Committee will elect a vice-chair from among its members annually, but may not be a member of a labor represented group. If there is a Chair-elect that person may be elected vice-chair, but may not be a member of a labor represented group.
When appropriate, the work of the BAC may proceed through subcommittees, whose membership may include, but need not be limited to, members of the BAC. The role of the subcommittees will be to review specific benefit areas, especially subjects involving particularly complex issues, and to develop recommendations and options for consideration by the full BAC. If issues arise that fall outside the purview of the subcommittees, then the chair may appoint a special ad hoc committee or address the issues involved through a committee of the whole.
The University Senate Office, in cooperation with the staff of the P&A Consultative Committee and the Civil Service Consultative Committee, will be responsible for staffing the BAC in the areas of committee appointments, agenda development, project planning, and meeting arrangements. The Office of Human Resources will provide technical staffing, and draw upon expertise from Financial Systems, Purchasing and the Office of the General Counsel when appropriate.
Revised: May 23, 2014