MVP Health Care,Rejecting rate increases initially sought by health insurer MVP after departmental review, BISHCA Commissioner Steve Kimbell approved new rates but only after sending MVP back to sharpen their pencils and reduce their initial request.Kimbell said, ‘MVP’s initial rate filings reflected’inappropriately, we believe’the inherent uncertainty of reliance on high-deductible health care plans. MVP apparently misunderstood the impact of moving so aggressively toward these unpredictable product designs. Vermont businesses and individuals are not going to bear the full cost of this miscalculation.’ MVP had submitted significant rate increases for network-based insurance products, citing unforeseen performance results from new high-deductible products.A high deductible plan requires an insured person to pay a larger amount of his or her own money for care before insurance pays any part of medical bills. The new rates go into effect July 1, 2011.In recent years Vermont health insurance carriers have asked for large rate increases for individuals and small employer groups. ‘This is a trend that has to be fought, not just by the Department but by insurers and providers if we are to have any hope of success in our efforts to achieve real health reform effort in Vermont,’ Kimbell said. Source: Department of Banking, Insurance, Securities & Health Care Administration. May 24, 2011
209SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Jackson Bolstad Details Let’s face it, life as an adult can be downright expensive and frustrating, especially during tough times like these. While your credit card has likely provided some additional freedom and flexibility lately, both in your personal and financial life, it’s important to remember that your credit card is not free money. You will have to pay it back eventually! With U.S. credit card debt hitting a staggering all-time high of $930 billion earlier this year, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, it’s clear that we could all probably use a little refresher on how to effectively use and manage our credit cards – myself included. For that, I turned to my colleague, Pamela Redleaf, a personal financial associate at Highmark Federal Credit Union, who regularly works with Highmark’s members to educate them on the importance of properly managing their credit cards and finances. Here’s some of the important advice and tips she had to share with me: Always pay your credit card off ahead of time. There are a number of reasons you should always pay your credit card off ahead of time, according to Pamela, but the most important is to avoid interest payments. Accounts that are paid-in-full are given an interest-free grace period, which usually lasts until the next due date. If you can’t pay in full, be sure to pay as much as you can, as far ahead of the due date as you can, in order to reduce your interest payments and make room for other needs and potential emergencies, she said. In addition to avoiding interest payments, paying your credit card off ahead of time can also help to improve your credit score as it reduces the amount of your credit limit you use, also called your credit utilization. This, along with payment history, can account for up to 65% of your credit score. Don’t overextend yourself or your walletYou should avoid maxing out or spending anywhere near your credit limit, Pamela advises, as it could cause long-term financial issues, including fees, debt, and damage to your credit score. A good practice is to always use less than 40% of your available credit. She recommends treating your credit card similar to a debit card or checkbook. If you don’t have the money currently or can’t save to pay it off later, that should be a sign that you can’t afford to make a purchase. CONSTANTLY monitor your balance If you’re using your credit card for everyday purchases, it can be easy to forget how fast those day-to-day transactions can add up, Pamela says. That’s why it’s essential to regularly monitor your balance. One of the best ways to do this is to download your credit union or card issuer’s mobile app and put it front and center on your phone’s home screen. By doing so, the app will serve as a consistent reminder to check your credit card balance. Also, if available, be sure to set up weekly account balance updates/notifications that can be sent directly to your phone or email. You can often do this right from the mobile app, or through your online account. Or, like me, consider creating a monthly calendar event on your phone that reminds you to make your payment. Make sure you’re taking advantage of rewards/benefits Lastly, Pamela strongly encourages that you take full advantage of any rewards or benefits programs offered through your credit card. From gift cards, cash back, and electronics to entertainment and airline miles, the right credit card can help you save money on the places you visit and things you do most. If you’re contemplating a new credit card, make sure to choose the credit card that best suits your needs and lifestyle. There’s a lot of responsibility and management that comes with a credit card. If you find yourself constantly in trouble with your credit card, don’t be afraid to lock it in a drawer and use only your debit card or cash. Just make sure not to close it, as doing so could negatively impact your credit score. Additionally, don’t be afraid to shop around for better interest rates and balance transfer promotions, especially if you consistently carry a balance from month to month. Pamela says your local credit union is always a great place to start!
Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) co-authored legislation regarding broadcast technicians and engineers.Legislation co-authored by Representative Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) regarding broadcast technicians and engineers was signed into law by Governor Pence.To ensure that the public has quick access to emergency information, House Enrolled Act 1037 allows the appropriate personnel access to make any necessary repairs to communication devices.Under current Indiana law, broadcast engineers and technicians could be arrested for entering disaster-affected areas that haven’t been cleared by first responders.This makes it more difficult for these workers to do their job, and subsequently more difficult for people in those areas to get the information they need.“When a tornado struck the community of Marysville in 2012, the local radio station was not able to broadcast for more than two days,” said Rep. Frye. “Now more than ever, the public relies on radio and TV for information during times of emergency. When human lives could be at risk, it is extremely important that these information outlets are up and running.”Indiana will join 18 other states that currently have similar legislation when the law goes into effect July 1.
O’Mahony trained on Tuesday as he continues his recovery from hamstring trouble suffered against England. The Munster captain is another who will be reassessed on Thursday. Plumtree conceded the call on Sexton will come down to Thursday’s session. “I think he’ll be pretty good for the weekend, just as long as Joe [Schmidt] makes that call on Thursday, and I think that’s positive news,” said Plumtree. “It looks like the scan is clear, so again it’s just how that thumb feels. “I guess there are certain aspects of the game, like tackling and grappling that will give it a true test. “So we’ll give all that a bit of test on Thursday.” Fly-half Sexton is now expected to be fit for selection for Ireland’s RBS 6 Nations clash with Italy in Dublin on Saturday. Ireland assistant coach Plumtree revealed the latest scans on Sexton’s thumb problem show no lasting damage. The Racing Metro playmaker must prove his full recovery in “tackling and grappling” on Thursday, said Plumtree. Sexton damaged his thumb in Ireland’s 13-10 defeat to England at Twickenham on Saturday, February 22. Racing Metro last week predicted the former Leinster star could miss between 10 days and six weeks, with Ireland bosses quickly downplaying that estimation. Sexton took part in Ireland’s training session on Tuesday, and could now be fully fit in line with the IRFU timescale, not Racing’s wide-ranging suggestions. “Jonny trained today and he did really well,” said Plumtree. “He was sort of in and out with Paddy [Jackson] and Mads [Ian Madigan], so we’ll make that final call on Thursday but he didn’t look in too much discomfort at all.” Sexton’s fitness will prove a moot point if head coach Joe Schmidt chooses to rest him in any case, with one eye on a potential title-decider in France on Saturday, March 15. Schmidt has already admitted he could opt to give several regulars a breather against the Azzurri, with flanker Peter O’Mahony falling into the same category. Johnny Sexton will face the “true test” of fitness on his thumb ligament problem in Ireland’s training session on Thursday, according to John Plumtree. Press Association