Open Enrollment

As we approach the 2020 benefit year, the health and well-being of our employees continues to be  a priority. We continue to strive to offer a competitive and comprehensive benefits package despite the challenging market and recent trends in health care.  In the face of increasing healthcare costs, the City is very pleased to announce that there will be no increases in employee premiums, annual deductibles or out-of-pocket maximums.

Once again, employee healthcare premiums for the 2020 benefit year will remain unchanged.  There will be one plan design change for the 2020 benefit year, effective January 1, 2020. The details of the change are described below.



Open enrollment for the City of Charleston health, dental/vision and flexible spending account plans for the 2020 benefit year will take place November 1, 2019 through November 30, 2019.  Only employees who desire to make changes to their current coverage AND employees who are enrolled in the Health and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts are required to participate. 


If you do not wish to make any changes to your medical and/or dental/vision plans or re-enroll in the flexible spending accounts, you are not required to participate in open enrollment.  If you wish to make a change, you are encouraged to access the enrollment forms on the City of Charleston website: Enrollment forms will also be available in Human Resources at City Hall in suite 304.


Beginning January 1, 2020, Emergency Room co-pays will increase from $50 to $70 per emergency room visit.  Please note that, emergency room co-pays do not apply toward individual or family deductibles or annual out-of-pocket maximums.



The Flexible Spending Account (FSA or C-LECT) allows employees to pay for eligible out-of-pocket health care expenses with pre-tax dollars.  The maximum annual contribution for 2020 is $2,750.  If you participated in the City’s FSA plan in 2019, you are eligible to carry over up to $500 that was not spent in 2019.  Once again, the FSA plan will be available through Benny Cards. Current FSA participants who will participate again in 2020 should not discard their Benny Card, your 2020 FSA contribution will be automatically loaded to your card. 



A Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account is a pre-tax benefit account used to pay for dependent care services while you are at work. Under this type of account, a “dependent“ is a child under 13 years of age and adult dependents who are unable to take care of themselves. Please keep in mind that dependents must live with you and be claimed as dependents on your tax return. The maximum annual contribution for 2020 is $5,000 if you are single or if you are married and filing a joint income tax return; the limit is $2,500 if you are married and filing a separate income tax return.


 If you are currently enrolled in the Health or Dependent Care FSA plan and desire to participate again in 2020, you must re-enroll by completing the 2020 FSA Enrollment Form and returning to Human Resources no later than November 30, 2019. 



Managing known health risk factors is one of the best methods to impact your health and control current and future claim costs and out of pocket expenses.  While all employees, retirees and covered spouses are strongly encouraged to get an HRA, any active employee and covered spouse who desires to participate in the City’s discounted healthcare plan must complete an HRA and mandatory follow-up by November 30, 2019. Retirees and covered spouses are not required to complete an HRA.  You may schedule an appointment with the City’s Health and Wellness Clinic to complete your HRA by visiting or by calling 877-423-1330.

We thank you for your service and contributions. We are committed to providing you with the resources and information you need to understand your benefits.  If you have additional questions regarding open enrollment or the City’s benefit package, please contact April Thompson, Benefits Coordinator, at or Maria Church, Benefits Manager, at or by phone at (304)348-8015.