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June 18, 2013

Reimbursment of Medicare premiums paid by retirees participating in their former employer’s health insurance plan
Bryant v Board of Educ., Chenango Forks Cent. Sch. Dist., 2013 NY Slip Op 04379, Appellate Division, Third Department

Supreme Court, Broome County, granted Theodora Q. Bryant’s CPLR Article 78 application to annul a determination of Chenango Forks Central School District to terminate reimbursement of certain Medicare premiums.*

The Public Employment Relations Board directed the School District to rescind its June 2003 memorandum in which it notified employees and retirees that it was terminating its practice of reimbursing Medicare Part B premiums.

In a companion case PERB ruled that the school district must reinstate its former practice of reimbursing retirees for Medicare Part B premiums** -- the same relief sought in the current proceeding.

The Appellate Division noted that PERB's order in the companion case has been upheld by the Court of Appeals [see 2013 NY Slip Op 04039 (2013)]. Accordingly, Bryant received the full relief challenged by School District in the current appeal as a result of that determination, . Accordingly, the court ruled that the instant appeal is now moot.

As to argument advanced under color of an exception to the mootness doctrine, the Appellate Division held that the claimed exception “does not apply in that, although the issue advanced herein may recur and is significant, it is not likely to evade review.”

* The underlying facts are set forth in the Appellate Division’s prior decision (21 AD3d 1134 [2005]) and in the companion case brought by the Chenango Forks Central School District (Matter of Chenango Forks Cent. School Dist. v New York State Pub. Empl. Relations Bd., 95 AD3d 1479 [2012], affd ___ NY3d ___, 2013 NY Slip Op 04039 [2013]). See, also, NYPPL’s summary of that decision posted on the Internet at http://publicpersonnellaw.blogspot.com/search?q=bryant

** The reason for reimbursing retirees for Medicare Premiums that they are required to pay is explained in acomment" in NYPPL’s summary of Munger v Board of Educ. of the Garrison Union Free School Dist., 85 AD3d 747, posted on the Internet at:  http://publicpersonnellaw.blogspot.com/2009/12/city-to-pay-100-of-cost-of-health.html

The decision is posted on the Internet at:
http://www.courts.state.ny.us/reporter/3dseries/2013/2013_04379.htm


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