TO: MAYOR WYTHE AND CITY COUNCIL
THROUGH: Walt Wrede, City manager
FROM: Andrea Petersen, Personnel Director
DATE: June 4, 2013
SUBJECT: Kenai Peninsula Borough Healthcare Meetings
In June 2011, the former borough administration began holding meetings with representatives from the Kenai Peninsula School District, Central Peninsula Hospital, South Peninsula Hospital, and the cities of Kenai, Homer, Soldotna and Seward to consider what options may be available to reduce healthcare costs. Mayor Navarre and his administration continued this important project. However, through these meetings it was discovered that there are several barriers the group faced.
• Alaska Statute currently prevents public entities from financially joining forces to create a health insurance plan.
• Some entities are self-funded and others are fully-funded.
• Collective Bargaining Agreements among the majority of the above entities presents a negotiating challenge.
• The upper and lower peninsula have opposing views with regards to collaborating with local healthcare providers.
I spoke with Paul Ostrander, Mayor Navarre’s Chief of Staff, regarding the future of meetings on health care consolidation. He stated that this is an important matter to the Mayor; however, other projects and priorities have prevented him from focusing on this one. I will be happy to update Mayor Wythe and City Council if there is renewed activity on healthcare consolidation.