Senate vote ends lifetime lawmaker retiree health care benefits

A 37-1 Senate vote today ended retiree health care for lawmakers not vested in the plan by 2013.

The Senate voted on a substitute to HB 4087, which initially would have ended the benefit for all lawmakers elected after 2007. With the Senate’s change, 96 Representatives and two Senators will lose the benefit.

Now, the state pays 90 percent of retiree health insurance premiums. To qualify, lawmakers must have served at least six years and be at least 55 years old. Coverage usually continues until age 65 when Medicare kicks in.