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Important Benefits Reminders

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Trouble-free employee benefit plan administration requires a strong partnership between employees and Human Resources. The Human Resources Department works diligently each year-end to accurately process the thousands of required or requested benefit record changes and then to check and double-check our work. However, in the end, we also must rely on you, the employee, to do your part in managing your benefits by confirming that you are enrolled in the benefits you intended to elect. Please carefully review your first paycheck and let us know if you have questions or if anything seems amiss.

Medical/Dental Insurance

  • All medical plan participants were mailed new ID cards in December. These new ID cards have information regarding our new pharmacy benefit manager, MagellanRx, including their group and plan number, as well as their customer service phone number. Please confirm that you have received your new ID card. If you did not receive your new ID cards or if you need additional cards (for example, for a child away at college) call CBA Blue customer service (1-888-222-9206).
  •  If you have been utilizing NEMOP for mail-order prescriptions and have not yet made arrangements to transfer your account to MagellanRx please do so by calling Magellan at 1-800-424-0472 to set up an account.
  •  If you made a change to who is covered under your medical or dental plan, your new ID cards should reflect those changes.  If your new ID cards do not list the correct family members please contact Lisa Hoff at x3372.
  •  As was announced in October, the employee portion of the medical & dental premiums did not increase for 2015.       However, any employee who made coverage level (single/2 person/family) changes should see a premium change in the first paycheck of 2015.

Vision Insurance

  • As a reminder our vision plan is with Vision Service Plan (VSP).  No ID card is required (just tell your VSP provider the last 4 digits of your SSN and date of birth). A summary of the plan and other helpful information is available on-line at http://www.middlebury.edu/offices/business/hr/staffandfaculty/benefits/vision.  The premium for the Vision Plan did not increase for 2015.

Voluntary Life and Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) Insurance

  • Premiums changes related to a change in coverage amount or age-band changes (5 year increments) should be reflected in the first paycheck in 2015. If you made changes or you hit a new age band in 2015, please confirm that your premium changed.
  • Requests for new life coverage or for increases in life coverage over the guarantee issue amount are not effective until approved by Mutual of Omaha. An Evidence of Insurability form must be submitted by you to Mutual of Omaha if you have requested this type of change. Mutual of Omaha will notify you directly of approval or denial. Any premium changes will be made as of the effective date of the approved coverage.

Flexible Spending Accounts

  • 2015 elections for the Health Care and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts should be reflected in the first paycheck of 2015. Please review your pay stub and confirm that your contribution is correct (divide your total annual election by 26 to calculate your per pay-period election.)
  • If you are a new Flexible Spending Account plan participant (you were not enrolled in a FSA last year) then FSA Benefits Cards were mailed to your home address in mid-December.  If you had a FSA last year you will not be issued a new card as they are valid for 3 years.  If your card is three years old, it will be good through January 31st and a new card will be issued by mid-January.  The Benefits Card can be used to access funds in your Health Care and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account.    Important information about the FSA Benefits Card is available at http://www.middlebury.edu/offices/business/hr/staffandfaculty/benefits/flex.
  • You have until March 15, 2015 to file claims against your 2014 flexible spending accounts for expenses incurred in 2014. The FSA Claim form and other helpful information on Flexible Spending Accounts can be found at http://www.middlebury.edu/offices/business/hr/staffandfaculty/benefits/flex. Please visit CBA Blue’s website at http://select.cbabluevt.com/middlebury/ to review your account information.

Retirement

  • If you submitted forms prior to the holiday break requesting changes to your Voluntary Retirement Plan or to enroll in the 457b Salary Deferral Supplemental Retirement Plan, your new elections should have been reflected in your first paycheck of 2015. If you requested changes please confirm that your elections are as expected.

If you have made a change to who is covered on your medical or dental plan and you have not received your new ID card(s), or if a benefit deduction doesn’t look right to you, or if you have any other questions or concerns about your benefits, please contact Human Resources as soon as possible. Thanks for doing your part to keep our benefit plans running smoothly!

Your Benefits Team,

~Lisa Hoff, Benefits Specialist (Health/Dental/Vision/Flex Spending) x3372

~Franklin Daniel, Benefits Specialist (Retirement Plans & Retiree Medical/Dental) x5755

~Cheryl Mullins, Benefits & Compensation Manager x5542

Middlebury College Receives 2015 Community Engagement Reclassification by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

For several years the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has helped frame and articulate “best practices” in higher education/community collaboration and learning. In 2006 the Foundation offered the first elective “Community Engagement” classification. That year, Middlebury’s (then) Alliance for Civic Engagement (ACE) applied for and received recognition in the inaugural round on behalf of the College. This past year, in addition to new applications, colleges and universities that were recognized in either 2006 or 2008 needed to reapply in order to be approved for reclassification. On January 7, 2015 the Carnegie Foundation, in collaboration with the New England Research Center for higher Education (NERCHE), awarded Middlebury College and others distinction through the 2015 Carnegie Community Engagement Classification.

This designation recognizes excellent work by faculty, staff, and students from multiple areas across campus (e.g., academic departments in the Arts, Humanities, Languages, Natural Sciences, Social Sciences, and other interdisciplinary programs; collaboration with Monterey and Schools Abroad; and offices/programs such as Community Engagement, Privilege & Poverty, the Center for Social Entrepreneurship, MiddCORE, Programs on Creativity and Innovation in the Liberal Arts, FoodWorks, Athletics, the Center for Careers & Internships, the Scott Center, CTLR, Orientation, JusTalks, the Commons, and more)—along with dozens of collaborating community partners. Examples of community-connected teaching, learning, and research initiatives; faculty-advised and student-led projects; volunteer efforts; internships; off-campus federal work study commitments; grant opportunities; alternative break trips; and more—demonstrated our alignment with institutional mission and priorities, overall, and the College’s continued commitment to work with and strengthen communities through partnerships, near and far.

From the Carnegie Foundation:

“Your application documented excellent alignment among campus mission, culture, leadership, resources, and practices that support dynamic and noteworthy community engagement, and it responded to the classification framework with both descriptions and examples of exemplary institutionalized practices of community engagement.  The application also documented evidence of community engagement in a coherent and compelling response to the framework’s inquiry.

“Your campus is one of 361 institutions that now hold the Community Engagement Classification.  It is heartening to see this level of commitment and activity.  Clearly, higher education is making significant strides in finding ways to engage with and contribute to important community agendas.  There is much to celebrate.”

“The importance of this elective classification is borne out by the response of so many campuses that have demonstrated their deep engagement with local, regional, national, and global communities,” said John Saltmarsh, Director of the New England Resource Center for Higher Education. “These are campuses that are improving teaching and learning, producing research that makes a difference in communities, and revitalizing their civic and academic missions.”

“This is the first time that there has been a re-classification process,” noted Amy Driscoll, Consulting Scholar for the Community Engagement Classification, “and we are seeing renewed institutional commitment, advanced curricular and assessment practices, and deeper community partnerships, all sustained through changes in campus leadership, and within the context of a devastating economic recession.”

Middlebury is one of 157 colleges and universities in the country to receive re-classification. This reclassification is valid until 2025.

“We applaud the Carnegie Foundation for recognizing the importance of setting high standards for valuable campus/community collaboration and articulating benchmarks to help guide those of us striving to pursue excellence in our work, while also drawing national attention and recognition,” comments Tiffany Nourse Sargent ’79, Director, Middlebury College Community Engagement. “One of the exciting points to underscore from this extensive self-study is the celebration that community engagement initiatives now generate from multiple points across campus, involving many more academic and co-curricular entities than was the case in 2006. While we in the Community Engagement office continue to serve as the ‘hub’ for campus community engagement initiatives, it is wonderful to see more and more positive connections campus-wide. To all who have contributed, thank you for your time, expertise, dedication, and good will as we work together to provide valuable and impactful learning experiences for our students and nurture strong and healthy communities.”

Holiday Pay Time Entry Reminder

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

As we near the holiday season, it is time to review procedures regarding time entry during the November and December breaks. Hourly (non-exempt) employees must use specific holiday pay codes to record time during the designated breaks; exempt (salaried) employees do not have use special codes.

The 2014 holiday schedule is:

Thanksgiving Break: 12:01 a.m. Thursday, November 27, through 11:59 p.m. Saturday, November 29

December Break: 5:01 p.m. Friday, December 19 through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, January 1 (the College reopens Friday, January 2, 2015)

Hourly Employees: There are two hourly employees pay codes – Holiday Pay and Holiday Premium Pay – that are used only during the designated holiday periods:

  • Holiday Pay (HOL): a benefit that is provided by Middlebury College to keep benefit-eligible employees’ pay whole without having to use CTO during designated holiday periods. It is not intended to provide extra pay: HOL, which pays at an employee’s regular hourly rate, is to be entered for normally scheduled hours by non-exempt benefit eligible employees on days during the specified holiday break periods whether or not they work. For the Thanksgiving break, up to two days may be entered, for the December break, up to nine days may be used. Employees who work variable or flexible schedules should coordinate entry of HOL with their supervisor to determine the appropriate number of HOL hours.
  • Holiday Pay Premium (HPP): a benefit that pays eligible non-exempt employees extra for working during the designated holiday periods. HPP, which pays at time-and-a-half the employee’s base hourly rate, is to be used by all eligible employees for hours worked during the specified holiday break periods. A limited number of part-time non-benefit eligible employees (such as those who work at the Snow Bow, as the Snow Bowl is open for regular business during the December) break are not eligible for HPP. Please speak with your supervisor or Human Resources if you have questions regarding your status or eligibility for HPP.
    Exempt Employees: the Holiday Pay code will be automatically entered for regularly scheduled time; no additional action is required.

For both hourly and exempt employees, standard pay codes (Regular, CTO, etc.) should be used for any time off before the start of the breaks and/or after 11:59 p.m. on last day of the breaks.

Who Worked on a Holiday
Hourly benefit-eligible staff: Enter Holiday Pay for any normally scheduled hours AND Enter Holiday Pay
Premium for hours actually worked.*
Hourly non-benefit-eligible staff: Enter Holiday Pay Premium for hours actually worked.*
Hourly non-benefit-eligible staff in positions designated as ineligible for HPP: Enter Regular for hours
actually worked.*
Salaried, exempt staff: No action.
* Remember to enter hours on the correct shift. 

Who Did Not Work on a Holiday
Hourly benefit-eligible staff: Enter Holiday Pay for any normally scheduled hours.
Hourly non-benefit-eligible staff: No action.
Hourly non-benefit-eligible staff in positions designated as ineligible for HPP: No action.
Salaried, exempt staff: No action. Holiday Pay code will default in during payroll.

FAQs

Q: I understand that holiday pay is for benefit eligible staff. However, I had coordinated with my supervisor and indeed worked during Thursday and Friday of Thanksgiving. Can I enter the hours normally in this case?
A: Worked hours during the holiday breaks should be entered as Holiday Pay Premium (HPP) by all non-exempt staff, whether or not they are benefits-eligible. The only exception would be Snow Bowl non-benefits eligible employees, since the Snow Bowl is not closed during the December break.
Q: I am a benefits-eligible hourly employee who normally works Tues-Sat; how would I enter time for the Thanksgiving break if I am off Thursday and Friday, then work Saturday? Would I get three days of holiday pay?
A: You would have to use CTO for one of the three days (the maximum holiday pay benefit is two days for the Thanksgiving break) if you were off all three days. If you work on Saturday, you would enter holiday pay premium for the hours if you work, but it wouldn’t be necessary to enter CTO since you would receive the maximum two days of holiday pay for Thursday and Friday.
Q: I normally work Sunday through Thursday; how would I enter my hours for the Thanksgiving break?
A: You would enter holiday time for Thursday, nothing for Friday and Saturday, and regular time for Sunday, assuming you work that day.

Please contact Human Resources if you have additional questions regarding time entry of HOL or HPP.

Open Enrollment

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Open Enrollment for Middlebury’s 2015 Health & Welfare Benefit Plan is being held from November 1 – 14, 2014.  All benefits-eligible employees are required to complete the open enrollment process within this time period even if they do not intend to make benefit changes for 2015.

Open enrollment is your opportunity to:

• Continue your current medical, dental, or vision elections into the new year OR add coverage for yourself and/or dependents OR terminate your own or your dependents’ coverage.
• Continue your current voluntary life and/or accidental death and dismemberment coverage for the new year OR increase OR decrease the amount of existing coverage in these plans.
• Enroll in the health care and/or the dependent care flexible spending account(s) for next year. If you do not make an FSA election, you will not be contributing for 2015 even if you participated in 2014.  For Q&A’s on the Health Care FSA rollover click here.

Open Enrollment must be completed, using Banner Web, between November 1 – 14, 2014.  Benefits eligible employees will be able to access the open enrollment module from any computer with internet access.

Getting Started
1. Access the Open Enrollment System:

• Click this link: http://go.middlebury.edu/bannerweb OR
• On the bottom right-hand corner of the Middlebury homepage http://www.middlebury.edu/  click “Quick Links” and then “Banner Web”

2. Enter your Banner Web User ID (your Midd ID number) and your PIN and click “Login”.
3. Click “Employee”, then “Benefits and Deductions”, and then “Open Enrollment”.

2015 Premium Rate Chart

Save the Date: Open Enrollment Nov 1st-14th

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Benefits open enrollment is being conducted electronically again this year.  You will be receiving an e-mail (ooa Oct 31st) detailing our 2015 benefits as well as step-by-step instructions on how to enroll using BannerWeb.  Human Resources will gladly help you through the process; if you have questions please call x2320.

All benefits eligible Faculty and Staff are required to complete Open Enrollment between November 1st & 14th.

Flexible Spending Accounts – it’s not too early to start calculating your 2015 annual election.  Per federal law, this year’s annual limit is $2,500 (plus you may roll up to $500 of unused 2014 Health Care FSA funds into your 2015 account).  If you will have large medical expenses next year (orthodontist work, laser eye surgery, etc.) you should make sure you know how much your out of pocket cost will be for these services before Open Enrollment starts.

For additional information on Flexible Spending Accounts, including a Planning Worksheet visit the Flex Spending webpage.

For Questions and Answers regarding the Health Care FSA rollover click here

New are Clearanced Again!!

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

I am in distress and need your help! Frown

You may have heard already if you keep abreast of the latest tech news, that Apple just announced a new line-up of MacBook Pro’s. This news to me differs from what it may mean to you. At the Apple Desk in the College Bookstore, this news only means the head-ache of having more Clearanced Mac’s in our store. It also means I have to go and slash prices on other Mac’s already on clearance! As well as make room for the new line-up.
FrownSo, now we are currently having a SLASH PRICES SALE on clearanced Mac’s and iPad’s!! You will find prices as low as up to $500 off regular prices.
You will find pricing on the price sheets below.

Clearanced MaciPad clearance Items

 

Reminder From HR About CTO Maximums

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

The maximum amount of CTO (combined time off) that can be carried into the next fiscal year is capped at 24 days (see table below for maximum hourly equivalents). Any CTO in excess of 24 days will automatically be transferred into your SLR as of June 27, for pay period 13 (6/9/14 – 6/22/14). Please plan accordingly. In order to avoid confusion and ease planning for employees, the CTO max is now applied to the last full pay period in June.

Throughout the year each employee is responsible for managing his/her CTO amounts within the applicable limits. Remember, if you allow your balance to reach maximum during any pay period except the final one of the fiscal year, your excess accrual does not automatically transfer to SLR –instead you will stop accruing and forfeit the un-accrued CTO time. Now is a good time to check your CTO balance in BannerWeb or a recent paycheck stub and plan your CTO use for the next few days and the upcoming fiscal year accordingly.

You may also transfer your own CTO at any time. When you report your time via BannerWeb, enter the number of hours you wish to transfer on the web time sheet in the row titled “Transfer CTO to SLR.”

CTO Maximum Amounts

Date CTO Maximum in Days CTO Max. in hours for employees w/ scheduled 8 hour days CTO Max. in hours for employees w/ scheduled 7.75 hour days
As of the last full pay period of June. 24 192 186
Any other time 36 288 279