Minutes, working files, and insurance specifications and proposals

Held by the New York State Archives

Overview of the Records


New York State Archives

New York State Education Department

Cultural Education Center

Albany, NY 12230

This series consists of the Temporary Health Insurance Board's minutes, historical files relating to the development of the first comprehensive state employees’ health insurance plan, and health insurance specifications and proposals. Information includes minutes; correspondence; reports and special studies; drafts of insurance plans and specifications; analyses of plans, specifications and proposals.
3 cu. ft.
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Organized into three subseries: 1. Board minutes; 2. Historical files; 3. Health insurance specifications and proposals.

Administrative History

The 1956 State Legislature authorized the first comprehensive State employees' health insurance plan and created a Temporary Health Insurance Board in the Department of Civil Service (D.C.S.) to establish regulations for health insurance contracts, administration of the plan, employee eligibility, and the voluntary participation of local governments.

The Civil Service Commission's President was authorized, with the Board's approval, to draw up the actual plan, contract with insurance providers, and establish an administrative structure.

The eight-member Board was appointed for two years as follows: four by the Governor, two by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and two by the Speaker of the Assembly. In 1958 Board members' terms were extended for another two years. Completing its work in 1960, the Board was terminated and its powers transferred to the Commission's President (L. 1960, Ch. 329). The former members of the Board, however, continued to meet for an additional year as a Health Insurance Advisory Committee.

Scope and Content Note

This series consists of the Board's minutes, Board and D.C.S. historical files relating to health insurance, and health insurance specifications and proposals.

The Board's minutes are contained in six bound volumes. The first volume contains the Board's agendas and official minutes arranged chronologically by meeting date. The agendas contain the meeting date and a listing of topics to be discussed. The official minutes contain the meeting date, attendees' names, summary of discussions and actions, and, occasionally, attachments such as correspondence, memoranda, and summaries of presentations made to the Board. The remaining four volumes contain verbatim transcripts of Board meetings arranged chronologically by meeting date. The first page of each of these volumes contains short summaries of each transcript in the volume.

The historical files are contained in seven binders and were compiled by D.C.S. from Department and Board files to form a complete chronological record of the development of the State employees' health insurance program and policies from 1955 to 1960. The binders contain the following types of records: correspondence with government officials, employee organizations, insurance companies, and other interested parties; Board and Department memoranda; Board, Department, Legislative, and consultant reports and special studies; drafts of insurance plans and specifications; analyses of plans, specifications and proposals; Department publications and press releases; and photographs of the contract-signing ceremony. One binder contains records relating to the internal administration of the Board (i.e. appointment, compensation, and controversies over conflict of interest) and another contains Department publications on the insurance plan.

Health insurance specifications and proposals are bound and contain general specifications for the plan (i.e. basic coverage and qualifications), fee schedules, demographic data on the State workforce to be covered by the plan, instructions for submitting proposals, and blank copies of forms. Along with the specifications are the proposals of various insurance companies based on the specifications. Each proposal contains a general description of the plan offered by the company including types of medical procedures covered and fee schedules.

This series also includes one file of loose documents containing copies of minutes of the Temporary Health Insurance Board and Advisory Committee and correspondence and memoranda relating to the implementation and administration of the health insurance plan.

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