The Business of the City: Miscellaneous

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Insurance Reform May Save Plainfield Taxpayers Millions: The Citizens' Campaign Model Ordinance

Today, I read an article posted by the Citizens' Campaign about Perth Amboy adopting a model insurance reform ordinance that may save the city more than $3 million. By adopting a transparent and more competitive process in looking for the best insurance coverage possible, Perth Amboy will save over a quarter of a million dollars in broker's fees and millions more in insurance savings. 

Heather Taylor, of the Citizens' Campaign, is sending me the toolkit for local insurance reform. In addition, the Citizens' Campaign has a number of other toolkits (including Municipal Pay-to-Play, Shared Services, and other model ordinances) designed to increase citizen participation in local governance--check out their site here: Citizens' Campaign

The resolution, according to the Citizens' Campaign, "...requires towns to seek a minimum of 3 bids for insurance, including bids from the State Health Benefits Plan, County Joint Insurance Fund, and others." I have posted the link to the article here, so that you may read it in its entirety:

The process of putting out an RFP (request for proposal) for brokers (including having the state bid alongside others) to compete for the best services to the municipality is certainly one that Plainfield should look into.
Given that our Chief Financial Officer, Ron Zilinski, has projected a budget shortfall of $3.4 million this year for Plainfield, it makes sense to take a close look at how we can save the taxpayers money--a competitive process can only benefit our community. I will be bringing this proposal the administration and to my colleagues on the governing body. 

Having a transparent process in terms of how we allocate public funds is the hallmark of effective and citizen-based governance--it's time for Plainfield to adopt such a process.

All best,



  1. Hi Rebecca,

    I found some information that might be of interest to you, it is from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the document's name is: Misunderstandings Regarding State Debt, Pensions, and Retiree Health Costs Create Unnecessary Alarm, Misconceptions Also Divert Attention from Needed Structural Reforms.

    Here is the link to it:

    I was glad to see that you will be focusing on this area. Regards.

  2. That is great news, however councilwoman by lowering the bid threshold to 17,500 has just doubled the workload of those individuals in the finance department. May suggest that you revisit the issue and talk with members of the state association of purchasing agents

  3. Oh, poor babies! Horrors! God forbid a public employee should have to work harder!!

    Meanwhile, the rest of us, given LAYOFFS going on in the private sector, have to pick up the slack to keep our jobs - doing the work of several people.

    No sympathy here.

    Keep cutting council. Get rid of the freeloaders, people that are incompetent or don't have up-to-date skills.