"Group insurance coverage" means benefit coverage provided to a group through a carrier authorized under chapters 61A, 62A, 62C, and 62D to do business in the state.
Every political subdivision authorized by law to purchase group insurance for its employees and providing or intending to provide group insurance coverage and benefits for 25 or more of its employees shall request proposals from and enter into contracts with carriers that in the judgment of the political subdivision are best qualified to provide coverage. The request for proposals shall be in writing and at a minimum shall include: coverage to be provided, criteria for evaluation of carrier proposals, and the aggregate claims records for the appropriate period. A political subdivision may exclude from consideration proposals requiring self-insurance. Public notice of the request for proposals must be provided in a newspaper or trade journal at least 21 days before the final date for submitting proposals.
The political subdivision shall make benefit and cost comparisons and evaluate the proposals using the written criteria. The political subdivision may negotiate with the carrier on benefits, premiums, and other contract terms. Carriers applying must provide the political subdivision with aggregate claims records for the appropriate period. The political subdivision must prepare a written rationale for its decision before entering into a contract with a carrier.
Group insurance contracts may not exceed five years in length, including all extensions. The political subdivision shall request proposals for coverage at least once every 60 months. Employees may be added to an existing group pursuant to a joint powers agreement under section 471.59.
The aggregate value of benefits provided by a group insurance contract for employees covered by a collective agreement shall not be reduced, unless the public employer and exclusive representative of the employees of an appropriate bargaining unit, certified under section 179A.12, agree to a reduction in benefits.
Every political subdivision contracting for and providing group insurance coverage as provided in this section shall file with the clerk or other comparable officer of the subdivision a copy of the group insurance contract and make the copy available for public inspection.