Welcome to Employer News, a newsletter from The Board of Pensions of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). This publication highlights recent Board news and important updates and information specifically for employers. We hope you find this newsletter useful and encourage you to share this information with those who can benefit from it. If you have any feedback or would like to subscribe to this newsletter, please let us know.

Employer Agreements now available

It’s time to review, update, and submit your Employer Agreement for 2019. Between now and October 12, log on to Benefits Connect and choose Employer Agreement to select the benefits your employees may elect during annual enrollment this fall.

Here are additional resources to help make your decisions:

If you have questions about the Benefits Plan or the benefits selection process, call the Board at 800-773-7752 (800-PRESPLAN).

Serve more with new medical option

A new medical option — a high deductible health plan (HDHP) — is available for 2019 in menu options. Employers will see the HDHP available in their 2019 Employer Agreement for benefit groups in menu options. The HDHP has lower monthly contributions than the PPO and EPO, which may enable some employers to offer medical coverage to more employees. It may be offered to employees regularly scheduled to work at least 20 hours per week who are not ministers in Pastor’s Participation.

Here are more resources about the HDHP:

Employers that select the HDHP are strongly urged to offer an HSA as a way to help employees close the HDHP deductible gap as well as save for future healthcare expenses. (The HSA may not be offered on its own.)

Replace paper forms with SCP

If you currently use paper forms to remit RSP contributions, be sure to update your contact information with Fidelity Investments so that you can transition to Simplified Contribution Platform (SCP) this year. Over 1,000 PC(USA) employers have registered for SCP.

If you have questions about SCP, contact Fidelity’s treasurer and administrator assistance line at 800-917-4369.

223rd General Assembly accepts Living by the Gospel

The 223rd General Assembly (2018) unanimously accepted Living by the Gospel — a guide to structuring ministers' calls. It spotlights the importance of benefits in supporting ministers as they devote their best gifts to kingdom work. The guide lays out the ways in which the Church supports well-being with the benefits, programs, and assistance available through Pastor’s Participation. Living by the Gospel presents information on effective salary by job code, geography, congregation size, and minister age. The data will be updated annually. Watch the Reverend Frank Clark Spencer, Board President, discuss supporting congregational ministry in this time of great change.

No dues increase in 2019 for Pastor's Participation or Medicare Supplement

At the summer meeting of the Board of Directors, the Healthcare Committee recommended and the Directors approved

  • holding dues steady for medical coverage in Pastor's Participation (25 percent of effective salary) for 2019 with no change to the minimum dues amount; and
  • keeping the cost of Medicare Supplement coverage unchanged for a second consecutive year.

Seminary student healthcare coverage costs, which were significantly reduced last year, will also remain unchanged for 2019.

The 2019 coverage costs for menu options, unique to each employer, will be available online through Benefits Connect in mid-July, when employers can begin selecting the benefits they will offer their employees during annual enrollment. Read other news from the summer Board of Directors meeting in the Board Bulletin.

2018 experience apportionment effective

A 3.9 percent experience apportionment for the Pension Plan was effective July 1. The apportionment is the sixth in as many years.

For the five-year period 2013-2017, the cumulative increase from the plan’s apportionments is 18.4 percent. Cumulative increases in the consumer price index for the same period amount to only 7.4 percent. Read more about experience apportionments.

Workplace crisis support and related services for managers

Church leaders and other managers who work for PC(USA)-affiliated employers have access to management consultation services through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). These services can help if you need assistance with difficult management or employee performance issues — or with a workplace trauma. Read more about these services.

RSP: Employers using paper forms for RSP contributions will continue to receive Fidelity Investments reminders to sign up for Simplified Contribution Platform (SCP) if they have not done so.

Call to Health: Members with medical coverage will receive a postcard. Encourage employees to make their appointments for preventive care now — there’s still time before Call to Health ends November 16.

If you have questions or need assistance, call the Board at 800-773-7752 (800-PRESPLAN) Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET, or email us at memberservices@pensions.org.

If you have questions or need assistance, call the Board at 800-773-7752 (800-PRESPLAN) Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET, or email the Board at memberservices@pensions.org.