New health benefits program offers incentive for part-time employees

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National Press Release
Monday, October 29, 2007

WASHINGTON - An innovative new benefits program means Transportation Security Administration (TSA) part-time transportation security officers (TSOs) throughout the country can now pay lower health insurance premiums - the same amount as their full-time counterparts. The change will result in substantial savings and act as an important incentive to attract and retain this critical group of employees.

Under federal law, part-time government employees pay a higher percentage of their total health insurance premiums based on their official part-time work schedule. With TSA's new health premium incentive program - made possible through flexibilities granted through the Aviation and Transportation Security Act - the agency will make up the difference in premiums charged to full-time and part-time TSOs.

For TSOs like Miami's Alexander Logan, this incentive will mean a savings of nearly $1,400 a year, or 65 percent. "It's very hard to find a part-time job that gives employees such benefits," he said. "And this job gives me a chance to do my part to protect the traveling public."

"Part-time TSOs are a critical component of our flexible security approach, and this benefit allows us to retain the best and the brightest," said Administrator Kip Hawley. "Last year we piloted the program at six airports and the part-time TSO retention rate increased from 31 percent before the pilot to 91 percent as of July 2007."

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