New State Law on School Insurance May be Revisited

JUNE 27, 2006 - Posted at 7:49 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - School districts around the state are going to varying lengths to comply with a new Arkansas law that requires them to provide the same health insurance benefits and employer contribution rates for all full-time employees.

In Springdale, the school board eliminated Superintendent Jim Rollins' $9,020 family health insurance benefit, but raised his salary by the same amount.  In Benton and Gosnell, school districts have reconsidered restructuring the contracts of entire employee groups because of differing benefits or rates.

Some legislators say they might have to revisit the law in the regular session that starts in January to make sure the measure is producing the intended results.

A report by the state Legislative Audit Division in January showed that about 24 percent of Arkansas' 251 school districts pay higher health-insurance premiums for superintendents than for teachers.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)