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Explanation of Benefits

Explanation of Benefits

Unified Fire Authority-Benefit Summary Booklet 2023-2024

Navigate My Benefits: Navigate is the online system that we use for all employees to make benefit elections offered at Open Enrollment and for newly hired employees. It can also be used to make changes due to qualifying events and to change personal information such as address and name changes due to marriage or divorce.

Health Insurance:  Provides coverage for necessary medical care, accident treatment, surgery, prescription drugs and other miscellaneous eligible expenses. Employees currently have the choice of two different plans with Select Health. The plans are Med Plus and Care Plus. UFA currently pays 80% of the total premium for employees eligible for benefits.

Dental Insurance:  Provides coverage for both routine and special treatment by dentists, orthodontist, oral surgeons, etc. UFA only offers one dental option and that is the Select Health Classic plan.

Life Insurance:  UFA currently provides each employee, who is eligible for benefits, with $25,000 of minimum life insurance. Employees may obtain additional insurance (up to $500,000, based on underwriting) at their own expense.  Employees may also obtain insurance for their spouse and children (based on underwriting). Life Insurance is is covered by PEHP.

Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) Insurance:  Provides benefits in the event of an accidental death, loss of use of limbs, speech, hearing or eye sight due to an accident, subject to the limitations of the policy.  UFA currently provides $25,000 in coverage for each employee, who is eligible for benefits.  Employees may obtain additional insurance (ranging from $25,000 to $250,000) at their own expense. AD&D coverage is provided by PEHP.

Vision Insurance:  UFA’s vision program is administered through EyeMed. This program includes the following coverage: exam, retinal imaging, frames, lenses, contact and laser vision correction. 

401(K) or 457 plans:  Voluntary tax-deferred retirement savings programs authorized under sections 401(k) and 457 of the Internal Revenue Code.  All UFA employees may defer portions of their own salary into these accounts.  Currently UFA does not contribute to a 401K or 457 plans.  

Flex Plan (125 Plan):   A program whereby employees can set aside pre-tax dollars to pay for out-of-pocket health care expenses not covered by insurance and/or dependent day care costs. The UFA currently offers the flex plan to all of its employees through a third party vendor and pays the administrative cost associated with the program.

Tuition Assistance Program:  Reimbursement of up to 75% of tuition costs for coursework (which must be in an approved field of study and related to employment with the UFA) in accordance with eligibility requirements.  Currently, the amount of assistance that may be received by an eligible employee is capped at $3,000 per fiscal year, and $15,000 per degree.  LINK

Employee Assistance Program (EAP): EAP is a resource to help address a broad range of personal difficulties that may be causing distress. Receive brief, face-to-face counseling to help resolve such concerns as:

  • Marital Difficulties
  • Family Problems
  • Stress & Anxiety
  • Elderly or Child Care
  • Drug/Alcohol Addictions
  • Legal or Financial Depression
  • Grief & Depression
  • Any Distressing Life Issue

UFA currently provides this service for all of its employees through Blomquist Hale 

Critical Illness Plan: The plan helps you focus on recuperation instead of the distraction of out-of-pocket costs. With the Critical Illness plan, you receive cash benefits directly—giving you the flexibility to help pay bills related to treatment or to help with everyday living expenses. This plan is offered by Aflac Group Insurance.

Hospital Indemnity Plan: The Hospital Indemnity Plan provides financial assistance to enhance your current coverage. So you may be able to avoid dipping into savings or having to borrow to address out-of-pocket-expenses major medical insurance was never intended to cover. Like transportation and meals for family members, help with child care, or time away from work, for instance. This plan is offered by Aflac Group Insurance.

Identity Theft Protection: Coverage is provided by Allstate Identity Protection and helps protect your identity. Should fraud or identity theft occur, their in-house Privacy Advocates® are always there to fully restore any employee’s compromised identity, even if it occurred prior to enrollment. https://www.allstateidentityprotection.com/

Paid Military Leave: Paid time off for employees called to military service.  Currently, 8-hour firefighter and non-firefighter employees, who are eligible for benefits, may take up to 120 hours of leave; 24-hour firefighters may take up to 168 hours of leave.   Necessary leave beyond these limits is considered military leave-without-pay. 

Sick Leave: Paid time off for employees (who are eligible for benefits) to use when they, or a member of their immediate family, are sick, injured or attending medical appointments. Leave is currently accrued at the rate of 8 hours per month for 8-hour firefighter employees and non-firefighter (Civilian) employees, who are eligible for benefits, and the rate of 12 hours per month for 24-hour firefighters. 960 hours of sick leave may be carried over from year to year for all sworn employees and 640 hours may be carried over for 8-hour Civilian employees. Hours above 960 for Sworn employees and 640 for Civilian are eligible for “buy back” at the end of each calendar year. Buy-back rate is established by the Board. The funds are deposited into an employee’s VEBA Account.

Conversion of Unused Sick Leave: Unused sick leave hours can be converted to additional vacation hours at the end of the calendar year, if the employee has used little or no sick leave during that year. 8-hour firefighters and non-firefighter employees, who are eligible for benefits, currently may have a maximum of 32 hours converted. 24-hour firefighters currently may have a maximum of 48 hours of sick leave converted. Sick leave conversion to vacation is optional on the part of the employee and coordinated each year through Payroll.

Vacation: Paid time off for employees (who are eligible for benefits) to use as personal time off, with approval from their supervisor. The current amount of leave that is accrued varies depending on the length of UFA service (see below). Unused vacation hours are currently cashed out at the time of termination or retirement. 342 Hours (8-Hour Sworn or Civilian employee) or 480 hours (24-Hour Sworn employees) may be carried over from year to year.

*Note: Vacation leave hours accrue semi-monthly (per paycheck) to provide the monthly total
Monthly* Vacation AwardedMonthly* Vacation Awarded
24-Hour Firefighters8-Hour Employees
Service date through the end of the 8th year12 Hours8 Hours
Beginning of the 9th year through the end of the 16th year18 Hours
12 Hours
Beginning of the 17th year and over24 Hours
16 Hours
*Note: Vacation leave hours accrue semi-monthly
(per paycheck) to provide the monthly total.
Monthly* Vacation Awarded
Non-Exempt Executive Staff and Exempt
Merit Employees through the end of the 16th year.
12 Hours
Non-Exempt Executive Staff and
Exempt Merit Employees beginning the 17th year and over and Exempt Executive Staff from the time of selection/hire
16 Hours

Funeral and Bereavement Leave: Paid time off granted following the death of a friend or relative.   Currently, for a death in the immediate family, 8-hour firefighters or non-firefighter employees, who are eligible for benefits, may take up to forty hours of leave and 24-hour firefighter employees may take leave for up to two 24-hour shifts. For a death of a friend or other relative, eligible employees may take up to five hours of leave. 

Holidays – 8-Hour Firefighters or non-firefighter employees, who are eligible for benefits, receive 12 paid holidays and 1 personnel day. Employees working 24-hour schedules currently receive six holiday shifts per year.

Retirement – All full-time employees are eligible for pension credit based on the system and Tier.  The Unified Fire Authority currently pays 100% of the retirement contribution for the defined benefit portion of the plan. Employees also have access to 401(k), 457 and Roth IRA plans through Utah Retirement Systems.  Information booklets are available at www.urs.org.  We will also hold an orientation session for individuals selected for hire and as part of that orientation, there will be a presentation from a representative of Utah Retirement Systems.

All full-time Civilian employees that are in the Tier II system will have 3% contribution to a retirement account selected by UFA.

*All full-time sworn firefighters are considered to be in Division B under Utah Retirement Systems firefighter retirement and are not eligible for Social Security contributions.

Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association (VEBA) – Beginning January 1, 2022, full-time merit employees (Firefighter and non-Firefighter) started receiving a 2 % VEBA Contribution (1.2% COLA as well as an additional .8%). This contribution was determined by FY21/22, CPI-U of 1.2%. As there are tax savings associated with the VEBA plan for both the employee and the employer, the UFA Finance Committee recommended a 2% VEBA Contribution. The UFA Board of Directors approved these adjustments in the final budget resolution.

VEBA is a Voluntary Employees’ Beneficiary Association (VEBA) plan. It is a type of tax-exempt trust used to reimburse medical expenses for employee’s and eligible dependents post-retirement or after separation from UFA. Eligible dependents are defined as a qualifying child or qualifying relative as of the end of the calendar year in which expenses were incurred to be eligible for benefits under your VEBA plan.

For more information please visit the VEBA page on the UFA website.