130th Ohio General Assembly
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H. B. No. 458  As Introduced
As Introduced

127th General Assembly
Regular Session
2007-2008
H. B. No. 458


Representative Uecker 

Cosponsors: Representatives Evans, McGregor, J., Huffman, Harwood, Wagner, Bacon 



A BILL
To amend sections 505.60, 505.601, 5705.05, and 5705.06 of the Revised Code to authorize the taxing authority of a subdivision to use money derived from the general levy for current expenses for road and bridge construction and repair, and to make clarifying changes to the laws authorizing a township to provide health care insurance.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF OHIO:
Section 1. That sections 505.60, 505.601, 5705.05, and 5705.06 of the Revised Code be amended to read as follows:
Sec. 505.60.  (A) As provided in this section and section 505.601 of the Revised Code, the board of township trustees of any township may procure and pay all or any part of the cost of insurance policies that may provide benefits for hospitalization, surgical care, major medical care, disability, dental care, eye care, medical care, hearing aids, prescription drugs, or sickness and accident insurance, or a combination of any of the foregoing types of insurance for township officers and employees. The board of township trustees of any township may negotiate and contract for the purchase of a policy of long-term care insurance for township officers and employees pursuant to section 124.841 of the Revised Code.
(B) If the board procures any insurance policies under this section, the board shall provide uniform coverage under these policies for township officers and full-time township employees and their immediate dependents, and may provide coverage under these policies for part-time township employees and their immediate dependents, from the funds or budgets from which the officers or employees are compensated for services, such policies to be issued by an insurance company duly authorized to do business in this state. Any township officer or employee may refuse to accept the insurance coverage without affecting the availability of such insurance coverage to other township officers and employees.
(B) The board may also provide coverage for any or all of the benefits described in division (A) of this section by entering into a contract for group health care services with health insuring corporations holding certificates of authority under Chapter 1751. of the Revised Code for township officers and employees and their immediate dependents. If the board so contracts, it shall provide uniform coverage under any such contracts for township officers and full-time township employees and their immediate dependents, from the funds or budgets from which the officers or employees are compensated for services, and may provide coverage under such contracts for part-time township employees and their immediate dependents, from the funds or budgets from which the officers or employees are compensated for services, provided that each officer and employee so covered is permitted to:
(1) Choose between a plan offered by an insurance company and a plan offered by a health insuring corporation, and provided further that the officer or employee pays any amount by which the cost of the plan chosen exceeds the cost of the plan offered by the board under this section;
(2) Change the choice made under this division (B) of this section at a time each year as determined in advance by the board.
An addition of a class or change of definition of coverage to the plan offered under this division by the board may be made at any time that it is determined by the board to be in the best interest of the township. If the total cost to the township of the revised plan for any trustee's coverage does not exceed that cost under the plan in effect during the prior policy year, the revision of the plan does not cause an increase in that trustee's compensation.
(C) Any township officer or employee may refuse to accept any insurance coverage authorized by this section without affecting the availability of such insurance coverage to other township officers and employees.
(D) If any township officer or employee is denied coverage under a health care plan procured under division (B) of this section or if any township officer or employee elects not to participate in the township's health care plan, the township may reimburse the officer or employee for each out-of-pocket premium that attributable to the coverage provided for the officer or employee incurs for insurance policies benefits described in division (A) of this section that the officer or employee otherwise obtains, but not to exceed an amount equal to the average premium paid by the township for its officers and employees under policies any health care plan it procures under division (B) of this section.
(D)(E) The board may provide the benefits authorized under this section, without competitive bidding, by contributing to a health and welfare trust fund administered through or in conjunction with a collective bargaining representative of the township employees.
The board may also provide the benefits described in this section through an individual self-insurance program or a joint self-insurance program as provided in section 9.833 of the Revised Code.
(E)(F) If a board of township trustees fails to pay one or more premiums for a policy, contract, or plan of insurance or health care services authorized by division (A) or (B) of under this section and the failure causes a lapse, cancellation, or other termination of coverage under the policy, contract, or plan, it may reimburse a township officer or employee for, or pay on behalf of the officer or employee, any expenses incurred that would have been covered under the policy, contract, or plan.
(F)(G) As used in this section and section 505.601 of the Revised Code:
(1) "Part-time township employee" means a township employee who is hired with the expectation that the employee will work not more than one thousand five hundred hours in any year.
(2) "Premium" does not include any deductible or health care costs paid directly by a township officer or employee.
Sec. 505.601.  If a board of township trustees does not procure an insurance policy or group health care services as provided in section 505.60 of the Revised Code, the board of township trustees may reimburse any township officer or employee for each out-of-pocket premium attributable to the coverage provided for that the officer or employee incurs for insurance policies benefits described in division (A) of section 505.60 of the Revised Code that the officer or employee otherwise obtains, if all of the following conditions are met:
(A) The board of township trustees adopts a resolution that states that the township has chosen not to procure a health care plan under section 505.60 of the Revised Code and has chosen instead to reimburse its officers and employees for each out-of-pocket premium that they incur attributable to the coverage provided for them for insurance policies benefits described in division (A) of section 505.60 of the Revised Code that they otherwise obtain.
(B) That resolution provides for a uniform maximum monthly or yearly payment amount for each officer or employee to cover themselves and their immediate dependents, beyond which the township will not reimburse the officer or employee.
(C) That resolution states the specific benefits listed in division (A) of section 505.60 of the Revised Code for which the township will reimburse all officers and employees of the township. The township may not reimburse officers and employees for benefits other than those listed in division (A) of section 505.60 of the Revised Code.
Sec. 5705.05.  The purpose and intent of the general levy for current expenses is to provide one general operating fund derived from taxation from which any expenditures for current expenses of any kind may be made, and the taxing authority of a political subdivision may include in such levy the amounts required for carrying into effect any of the general or special powers granted by law to such subdivision, including the acquisition or construction of permanent improvements and the payment of judgments, but excluding the construction, reconstruction, resurfacing, or repair of roads and bridges in counties and townships and the payment of debt charges. The power to include in the general levy for current expenses additional amounts for purposes for which a special tax is authorized shall not affect the right or obligation to levy such special tax. Without prejudice to the generality of the authority to levy a general tax for any current expense, such general levy shall include:
(A) The amounts certified to be necessary for the payment of final judgments;
(B) The amounts necessary for general, special, and primary elections;
(C) The amounts necessary for boards and commissioners of health, and other special or district appropriating authorities deriving their revenue in whole or part from the subdivision;
(D) In the case of municipal corporations, the amounts necessary for the maintenance, operation, and repair of public buildings, wharves, bridges, parks, and streets, for the prevention, control, and abatement of air pollution, and for a sanitary fund;
(E) In the case of counties, the amounts necessary for the maintenance, operation, and repair of public buildings, for providing or maintaining senior citizens services or facilities, for the relief and support of the poor, for the relief of needy blind, for the support of mental health, mental retardation, or developmental disability services, for the relief of honorably discharged soldiers, indigent soldiers, sailors, and marines, for mothers' pension fund, support of soil and water conservation districts, watershed conservancy districts, and educational television, for the prevention, control, and abatement of air pollution, and for the county's share of the compensation paid judges;
(F) In the case of a school district, the amounts necessary for tuition, the state teachers retirement system, and the maintenance, operation, and repair of schools;
(G) In the case of a township, the amounts necessary for the relief of the poor and for the prevention, control, and abatement of air pollution. This section does not require the inclusion within the general levy of amounts for any purpose for which a special levy is authorized by section 5705.06 of the Revised Code.
Sec. 5705.06.  The following special levies are hereby authorized without vote of the people:
(A) A levy for any specific permanent improvement which the subdivision is authorized by law to acquire, construct, or improve, or any class of such improvements which could be included in a single bond issue;
(B) A levy for the library purposes of the subdivision, in accordance with the provisions of the Revised Code authorizing levies for such purposes, but only to the extent so authorized;
(C) In the case of a municipal corporation, a levy for a municipal university under section 3349.13 of the Revised Code, but only to the extent authorized;
(D) In the case of a county, a levy for the construction, reconstruction, resurfacing, and repair of roads and bridges, other than state roads and bridges;
(E) In the case of a county, a levy for paying the county's proportion of the cost of the construction, improvement, and maintenance of state highways;
(F) In the case of a township, a levy for the construction, reconstruction, resurfacing, and repair of roads and bridges, excluding state roads and bridges, including the township's portion of the cost of the construction, improvement, maintenance, and repair of county roads and bridges;
(G) The levies prescribed by division (B) of sections 742.33 and 742.34 of the Revised Code.
Each such special levy shall be within the ten-mill limitation and shall be subject to the control of the county budget commission, as provided by sections 5705.01 to 5705.47 of the Revised Code.
Except for the special levies authorized in divisions (A), (B), (C), and (G) of this section, any authority granted by the Revised Code to levy a special tax within the ten-mill limitation for a current expense shall be construed as authority to provide for such expense by the general levy for current expenses.
Section 2.  That existing sections 505.60, 505.601, 5705.05, and 5705.06 of the Revised Code are hereby repealed.
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