POSTED: Tuesday, April 26, 2011 - 5:58pm
UPDATED: Friday, October 14, 2011 - 9:21am
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — The Office of Group Benefits (OGB) is debated by Louisiana lawmakers today.
OGB is responsible for the health benefits of state retirees and state employees.
Commissioner of Administration Paul Rainwater argued the plan to privatize the operation, citing that Louisiana is one of only two states operating within this model and noted that it would reduce roughly 150 jobs.
The Republican Party sees this as a creative solution to the budget shortfall.
Members of the Democratic Party say there's not enough information to support this being anything other than the creation of one-time funds.
State Senator Butch Gautreaux of Morgan City is one of these senators, stating he is completely dissatisfied with the answers he's getting regarding the planned sale of the state insurance plan that serves the health insurance needs of tens of thousands of state employees, retirees and their families.
"I am amazed at the inadequate responses we received from both the Division of Administration and the Office of Group Benefits regarding this privatization plan," Gautreaux said. "I am particularly concerned about the lack of detail in their responses and, in some cases, their outright inability to answer questions from lawmakers. So, I am going to keep asking questions until we and the citizens of Louisiana get the answers they deserve."