Gazette, 4/19/95


Elder Care/Adult Dependent Care

The Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Dependent Care will present an Elder Care/Adult Dependent Care Forum Thursday, April 20, noon-1:30 pm at the Tang Center, first floor.

Speakers will include Andrew Scharlach, associate professor of social welfare and author of "Elder Care in the Workplace"; Carol Hoffman, director of CARE Services and co-chair of the advisory committee; and Beth Witrogen McLeod, author of "The Caregivers" series that ran in the San Francisco Examiner April 2-9.

The forum will review faculty/ staff elder/adult dependent care survey results, discuss elder/adult dependent care in the workplace, review the advisory committee's 23 recommendations approved by the chancellor and invite comments and suggestions from faculty and staff.

For more information, call 643-7754 or e-mail careserv@uclink2.

Around Cal

Rings Champ Goes National

Bryan Fox, who holds Cal's record on the still rings with a 9.85, heads to the NCAA gymnastics national championships April 20-22. The men's gymnastics team missed going to the nationals by a paltry .4 point, but six members will be competing individually. Coach Barry Weiner, in his fourth season, has taken the team from a 1-18 record in 1990-91 to a 15-2-1 finale this season, beating the top five teams in the nation. Cal's men's gymnastics team won the nationals in '68 and '75 under legendary coach Hal Frey; Weiner plans on continuing that legacy.

Awards and Honors

Leon Chua, professor of electrical engineering and computer sicence, will receive the Mac Van Valkenburg Award from the Circuits and Systems Society--the highest technical honor given by the society.

Michael Lieberman, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, has won the 1995 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Plasma Sciences and Applications Award for his contributions to the field of plasma science. It will be presented in June at the 22nd IEEE and Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society international conference on plasma science in Madison, Wis.

Glenn Seaborg, University Professor of Chemistry, has had an asteroid (minor planet 4856) named in his honor by its discoverers, Caroline and Eugene Shoemaker. Discovered in 1983, Seaborg is a main-belt asteroid, 20-30 km in diameter, visible with a telescope of at least 20 inches aperture. Olly Wilson, professor and chair of the Music Department, has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. The Academy's 250 members include America's most prominent artists, architects, writers and composers. Other new members elected with Wilson include Jules Feiffer and Brendan Gill. A composer of chamber, vocal and orchestral works, Wilson has received commissions from the Boston and San Francisco Symphonies and the New York Philharmonic.

Staff Enrichment

Employee Development and Training

For more information, for copies of the 1994-95 Employee Development and Training catalog, or for information on how to enroll in classes, call 642-8134.

Designing and Delivering an Effective Presentation

April 25 and 28, 8:30 am-noon, Room 24, University Hall

Learn how to plan for your presentation by analyzing your audience, establishing your objectives and organizing your material. You will also be taught more effective delivery skills and strategies for dealing with the anxiety of giving a presentation.

Career Panel of Analysts

May 3, 12:15-1:30 pm, Room 24, University Hall

This career panel will feature Berkeley analysts discussing their job responsibilities, professional skills, career paths and educational backgrounds. Bring your lunch and questions. No advance enrollment required.

Workers' Compensation

For more information or to enroll, call Laurie Westphal at 643-9403 or Cynthia Burnham at 643-6921.

Workers' Compensation Benefits Procedures, Introductory Class

May 3, 9 am-noon, Section Club Room, Tang Center

Learn about Workers' Compensation benefits, including employee options, extended sick leave and how to "buy back" time.

Workers' Compensation Benefits Procedures, Advanced Class

May 10, 9 am-noon, Section Club Room, Tang Center

This class will cover case examples, calculations and time sheet documentation. Enrollees must have attended the introductory class. Exceptions may be granted by calling Laurie Westphal at 643-9403.


BEN.COM Is Coming

BEN.COM is an interactive voice response system being developed by Office of the President, Employee Benefits. It will provide benefits information to faculty and staff over the telephone. Employees will use their social security numbers and a personal identification number to obtain information. Access will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with short periods of downtime for system maintenance.

The first application for this system will be the UCRS board election in June. Election information will be sent to employees in May.

Access to the benefits information line is expected to be available by late September. Open enrollment 1995 changes will be made using the voice response system instead of paper forms. Watch for more information in Berkeleyan.

Family Member Eligibility Requirements Change

Eligibility requirements for legal wards and adopted children have changed.

Legal Ward

Effective Jan. 1, 1995, requirements for legal wards of employees to participate in UC-sponsored medical, dental, optical and legal plans changed. A legal ward enrolled before Jan. 1, 1995, had to be under the age of 18, unmarried and continuously covered. Legal wards enrolled after Jan. 1, 1995, have to be under the age of 18, unmarried, living with you, supported by you at least 50 percent and claimed as your tax dependent (annual proof required).

Employees with legal wards enrolled on or after Jan. 1, 1995, will be asked to submit documentation proving tax dependency each year. (Please do not submit records until requested.)

Employees with legal wards over the age of 18 on their plans should contact Marie Johnson (642-7730) in the Benefits Office immediately for information regarding COBRA continuation and conversion options. A form must be completed to de-enroll a legal ward.

Adopted Children

Because of recently passed state legislation, in addition to the existing eligibility conditions for adding newly adopted children to health plans, employees may add newly adopted children to their health plans as soon as they have the legal right to control the child's health care.

Under current University regulations, eligibility for an adopted child begins on the date the child is placed in the subscriber's physical custody, or, if not enrolled at that time, on the date the adoption becomes final.

New university regulations, retroactive to Jan. 1, 1994, are as follows:

For newly adopted children, eligibility begins on the earlier of (1) the date the employee or employee's spouse has the legal right to control the child's health care, or (2) the date the child is placed in the employee's physical custody. If not enrolled during the period of initial eligibility (PIE) beginning on that date, there is an additional PIE beginning on the date the adoption becomes final.

The following documents are proof in California of physical custody and the legal right to authorize health care. You only need to provide one.

To prove physical custody:

* health facility minor release report

* adoptive placement agreement

* relinquishment form

* final decree of adoption

* medical authorization form (if it includes the date of the adoptive placement on it)

To prove legal right to control the child's health care:

* health facility minor release report

* medical authorization form.

A copy of the appropriate documentation should be attached to the enrollment form which will be forwarded to the insurance carriers.

Changes in Administration Of 403(b) Plan

The Internal Revenue Service is reviewing requirements and restrictions concerning administration of tax-deferred 403(b) plans. As a result, UC Benefits has instituted a number of changes affecting the University of California Tax-Deferred 403(b) Plan to more stringently monitor administration of the plan.

A letter explaining changes to plan procedures, as well as the 1995 Tax-Deferred 403(b) Plan Worksheet--Employees Without a Break in Service and the new Salary Reduction Agreement described below were recently sent to every 403(b) plan participant. Requests for worksheets for employeeswho have had a break in service may be directed to UC Benefits at (800) 888-8267 x70651 or 987-0651.

Changes in 403(b) plan administration include the following:

o The Salary Reduction Agreement form has been combined into one form for UC-managed funds, Fidelity and Calvert. This is to emphasize that all funds must be taken into account in determining your maximum annual deferral limit. An employee enrolling in Fidelity or Calvert is instructed to send the form to Fidelity or Calvert first so the account can be set up. The form will then be forwarded to campus payroll for processing.

o Section 5 of the Salary Reduction Agreement form, entitled "Statement of Maximum Annual Contribution," allows you to indicate your individual annual limit. You can calculate your maximum annual contribution amount by working through the 1995 Tax-Deferred Plan Worksheet. If you do not indicate an amount, the default will be the Tax Reform Act limit, which is $9,500 for 1995.

Once you have reached your maximum annual contribution amount, deferrals will automatically be suspended until the following calendar year. At the beginning of a new tax year, if no change or cancellation has been made, deferrals will resume automatically to the funds previously selected.

Employees with 15 or more years of UC service who are eligible for the catch-up provision who want to contribute more than $9,500 must contact Jennifer Benford (642-9311) in the Benefits Office.

The IRS restricts salary reduction agreement changes to one per tax year. Participants may cancel the agreement at any time but cannot enter into another agreement until a subsequent tax year.

Consequences of a violation of the one-change-per-year rule are severe. IRS regulations state that deferrals made as a result of a second change are ineligible, must be refunded and treated as compensation, and the new agreement must be cancelled at the first opportunity. Employees will be notified if this occurs and refunded appropriately. In addition, in compliance with the one-change-per-year rule, the participant may not re-enroll in the 403(b) plan until the next tax year.


Copyright 1995, The Regents of the University of California.
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