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Health Trust to return $13.9 million to members

Health Trust, the employee benefits pool that provides health insurance coverage to many towns and school districts throughout the state, announced last week that it will return $13.9 million in medical and dental surplus funds for 2012 to its members.

In a news release announcing the refund, Health Trust Executive Director Peter Bragdon said medical and dental costs for the year came in below projections. In emails to the Ledger-Transcript, Bragdon said notification letters to towns and school districts that are members will be going out in about a week.

Health Trust, which had been part of the Local Government Center, became an independent risk pool following a Sept. 1 reorganization. At that time the Property-Liability Trust, which provides workmen’s compensation and unemployment programs, also became an independent organization. Bragdon, who is a state senator, was hired in September as executive director of Health Trust and stepped down as Senate president shortly afterward, following criticism that his new job would be a conflict of interest. Bragdon did not resign his Senate seat, just his post as Senate president.

In an email, Bragdon told the Ledger-Transcript that the latest return is not related to a current lawsuit against the Local Government Center, in which Peterborough and a number of other towns that were once members of the Health Trust risk pool are seeking a share of an earlier $33.2 million in 2010 surplus funds. The LGC was ordered by the N.H. Bureau of Securities Regulation to repay those funds to members, but the funds were only returned to towns and school districts that were Health Trust members as of the August 2012 order.

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