AUSTINTOWN School board discusses insurance switch


This was the first board meeting for new Superintendent Douglas Heuer.
AUSTINTOWN -- Although some members of the Board of Education said changing health insurance providers will benefit Austintown Schools, some people present at yesterday's meeting were not convinced.
Michael Creatore said switching the provider from Professional Risk Management to Aetna will save Austintown schools $709,000.
Creatore added that $60,000 was paid to CBIZ, a company in Columbus, to research insurance companies. CBIZ decided that Aetna was the best option.
Irene Flowers, a French teacher at Fitch High School, addressed the board with her concerns about the switch, saying that she likes to deal with local companies like PRM.
"I like to save money as much as the next person," Flowers said. "You can buy something cheap now, but you will have to replace it later. You end up paying more money in the end. It's like the guy who promises you the moon. When you are with him, you realize the moon is way out there."
School consortium
The board will meet with the consortium of 14 schools in the Mahoning Valley, which does not include Youngstown City Schools, to discuss insurance providers today.
"If it doesn't work out, next year we can shop around again," Creatore said.
This was the first board meeting for new Superintendent Douglas Heuer, who said he was looking forward to working with the board.
The board will meet at 6:30 p.m. July 19 at Watson Elementary School.

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