blog posts Free Flu Shots for State Health Plan Participants Sep 26, 2022 4:00 pm0 views Seasonal flu shots are available at no charge to faculty, staff, and retirees that are state health plan participants. Health Plan Reminder: Out-of-Network Providers Sep 22, 2022 8:00 am7 views You are encouraged to use in-network providers to receive the best value from your health plan. No matter which plan you are enrolled in, receiving health care from an out-of-network provider will significantly increase your out-of-pocket medical costs. University of Illinois System Statement on Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment and Other Sexual Misconduct Sep 16, 2022 11:00 am13 views The University of Illinois System Statement on Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment and Other Sexual Misconduct is available on the System HR website. Please take a few minutes to review this important information. Review/Update Your Mailing Address Sep 16, 2022 10:00 am58 views Please make sure your Mailing Address is current and correct so that you receive important information for employment and tax purposes. Deadline September 30: Submit FSA Claims for FY2022 Sep 15, 2022 8:00 am35 views Only a few weeks remain to submit your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) claims for the FY2022 plan year! You are receiving this email because our records indicate that you participated in an FSA during FY202. Any remaining claims for services from July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022, must be submitted by September 30 for reimbursement. Deadline Approaching: Public Service Loan Forgiveness Limited Waiver Aug 26, 2022 3:00 pm198 views This is a general reminder of interest to employees with student loans. The Biden-Harris Administration recently made an announcement about a new student debt relief plan. To be notified when the new process has officially opened, sign up at the Department of Education site. However, please remember that a different existing loan forgiveness program has an upcoming deadline on October 31, 2022. The New Training and Development Resources Website is Live Aug 18, 2022 9:30 am108 views I am excited to announce that the new Training and Development Resources website is now live. Returning from Leave - State Benefits Coverage Aug 17, 2022 11:00 am58 views During an unpaid leave, Central Management Services (CMS) mails bills directly to State benefit participants, and bills are to be paid in full to CMS. Failing to pay premium bills can result in your coverage being terminated. Coming soon! New Training and Development Resources website Aug 11, 2022 8:30 am47 views I am excited to announce the upcoming release of the Training and Development Resources website, launching Thursday, August 18. The new site will centralize all training materials owned and managed by System Office units into a single location. Federal and State Employment Posters Aug 3, 2022 1:00 pm50 views Each state and U.S. Department of Labor provide labor law posters that, by mandate, must be posted so that all employees, including those working remotely, may access pertinent labor law information. These posters serve the important purpose of notifying workers of certain rights under employment laws. You may access and review the posters on the System Human Resource Services Required Federal and State Posters webpage. August 2022 Wellness Connection Aug 3, 2022 1:00 pm0 views The August 202 Wellness Connection Newsletter is now available! In this issue: Color Your Plate, Tostadas de Pollo (Chichek Tostadas), Healthy Boundaries are a Form of Self-Care, Wellness and Wellbeing for Pets, Interview with UI Stride Know Your System Individual & Team Winners. Saving For Your Future? Supplemental Retirement Plans Can Help! Jul 19, 2022 8:00 am96 views Are you contributing to a supplemental retirement and investment plan? If not, now may be a good time to start! The University 403(b) Plan is one of three supplemental retirement plans available to help you start or increase your retirement savings. Enrollment is voluntary and available at any time. State Deferred Comp Plan: Empower Now Live Jul 15, 2022 2:00 pm131 views The State of Illinois Deferred Compensation 457 Plan recordkeeping transition from T. Rowe Price to Empower is now complete. You can log into the Empower site to view your account. Your Flexible Spending Account: Verify Deductions and Reminder Jul 13, 2022 8:00 am85 views At the beginning of a new benefit year, it’s a good idea to review your payroll deductions to ensure the appropriate amounts are being withheld. You should view the benefit deductions on your Earnings Statement to ensure your FSA deductions and other benefit deductions are correct. Verify Your State Benefit Elections Jun 23, 2022 8:00 am211 views The new plan year for State benefits (health/vision, dental, and life insurance, and flexible spending accounts) starts on July 1, 2022. If you made any changes during Benefit Choice, you should have received or will soon receive a mailing from CMS at your home address confirming your Benefit Choice elections. Any changes you made will be in effect July 1, 2022. Celebrating Juneteenth 2022 Jun 8, 2022 3:00 pm113 views As a reminder, the University of Illinois System will observe Juneteenth on Friday, June 17, 2022. The first observance of the Juneteenth holiday, which falls on a Sunday this year, will occur on the preceding Friday to accommodate academic scheduling. Going forward, it will be observed on the date of June 19 when it occurs on a weekday, or following forthcoming state guidance for observance when it falls on a weekend. Recordkeeper Change: State Deferred Compensation Plan Jun 1, 2022 3:00 pm714 views The State of Illinois Deferred Compensation 457 Plan recordkeeping is transitioning from T. Rowe Price to Empower, effective July 1, 2022. A transition guide was sent to your mailing address via postal mail from Central Management Services (CMS) last week. You may also view details on the Empower transition website. 2022 Salary Program May 31, 2022 3:00 pm6 views In consultation with university leadership, including university chancellors and vice presidents, I am pleased to announce the authorization of a 3.5% merit-based salary program for faculty, academic professional and civil service staff across the University of Illinois System, effective Aug. 16, 2022. This program remains a top priority in our budget planning to enable much-deserved recognition for employees. To help offset current economic challenges our nation is facing, this year's program is larger than last year's. Each of our three universities have also been asked to apply their own guidelines for separate programs to address compression, market, equity and retention issues. Commitments for existing contractual agreements, promotions and equity adjustments will also be honored as part of this program. Pay adjustments for faculty and staff in bargaining units will be determined by negotiations with the bargaining representative and/or applicable contract settlements and are not subject to unilateral adjustments unless authorized or permitted pursuant to the collective bargaining process. We continue to value your many contributions to the U of I System. You are the foundation of our excellence – of our ability to advance world-class teaching and research and create transformational impact – and in doing so, make us an increasingly recognized and respected model for the nation. I am deeply grateful for your hard work, your dedication and your loyalty. Sincerely, Tim Last Chance: Benefit Choice Ends Tuesday, May 31! May 27, 2022 8:30 am207 views Benefit Choice ends Tuesday, May 31! This is your final reminder to make your State benefit elections or changes for the upcoming plan year on https://MyBenefits.illinois.gov. Elections will be effective July 1, 2022. Flexible Spending Re-Enrollment and Reminders May 26, 2022 8:30 am92 views The end of Benefit Choice is May 31. If you haven’t re-enrolled in the Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Program for the plan year beginning on July 1, 2022, you have until May 31 to do so at https://MyBenefits.illinois.gov. No action is required if you are not re-enrolling in an FSA or making any other Benefit Choice changes! Deadline Approaching: Benefit Choice Ends May 31! May 20, 2022 1:00 pm136 views The last day to make Benefit Choice changes will be here soon! Remember, you only have until May 31 to make your State benefit elections or changes for the upcoming plan year on https://MyBenefits.illinois.gov, including health, dental, life insurance, flexible spending account (MCAP/DCAP) enrollment, and health savings account (HSA) enrollment. Elections will be effective July 1, 2022. Be Alert for Unemployment Fraud and Phishing May 20, 2022 9:00 am46 views The Illinois Department of Employment Security website continues to note that they are aware of phishing schemes targeting Illinoisans. Benefit Choice: Submit Your Documentation May 13, 2022 9:00 am268 views If you made a Benefit Choice change that requires supporting documentation, please remember to provide your documents by the deadline! COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave May 13, 2022 8:30 am198 views Effective April 5, 2022, the University of Illinois System offers COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave time to eligible employees in accordance with Illinois Public Act 102-0697. The expanded leave benefits of COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave provided under Public Act 102-0697 replaces the University’s previously provided temporary coronavirus-related paid leave. Benefit Choice: Make Your Choices by May 31 May 13, 2022 8:00 am143 views We’re halfway through Benefit Choice at https://MyBenefits.illinois.gov! Remember, you have until May 31 to make your State benefit elections or changes for the upcoming plan year. Elections will be effective July 1, 2022. For help registering and logging in to MyBenefits, see the MyBenefits FAQs. Schedule of Approved Holidays for FY23 May 9, 2022 3:30 pm687 views The schedule of approved holidays for fiscal year 2023 is below. SURS Money Purchase Factors Change July 2, 2022 May 4, 2022 2:30 pm120 views Reminder: If you are considering retirement in the next 2 years, remember that the factors table used to calculate SURS retirement benefits under the Money Purchase calculation will change effective July 2, 2022. This change is a result of a study required by state statute. View the resources listed below to determine if you are impacted by this change, and for important considerations if you are thinking about retirement. May 2022 Wellness Connection May 4, 2022 1:00 pm0 views The May 2022 Wellness Connection Newsletter is now available! In this issue: UI Stride Spring Campaign - Know Your System; Ground Turkey Taco Skillet; Yes, Meditation Can Help With That!; Food Safety During Summer Months, Interview with Dena Lawrence, Ed. M. MyBenefits Plus Voluntary Benefit Programs May 4, 2022 8:00 am176 views Did you know that as a full-time State benefits-eligible employee you have access to MyBenefits Plus, a voluntary benefit program? MyBenefits Plus, administered by Corestream, offers a variety of services available to you through payroll deduction. Be Well Illinois: Feel Like a Million Wellness Challenge Apr 26, 2022 4:30 pm117 views Be Well Illinois invites you to join the Feel Like a Million wellness challenge from May 2 - June 12, 2022. FY 2023 Benefit Choice Announcement Apr 25, 2022 8:00 am662 views The State Department of Central Management Services (CMS) has announced that the Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 Benefit Choice enrollment period will begin May 1 and end May 31, 2022. Springfield Clinic Letter Apr 21, 2022 1:00 pm23 views You may have received a letter from Springfield Clinic regarding health care claims. The letter only applies to Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) Open Access Plan (OAP) members. Please disregard if you participate in a BCBS HMO (HMO Illinois or BlueAdvantage HMO) plan. Benefit Choice: Save on Taxes with a Flexible Spending Account! Apr 19, 2022 8:00 am147 views Have you considered participating in the State of Illinois Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Plan? If you spend $265 or more per year on recurring eligible medical or dependent care expenses, then you may save money by paying for them with an FSA. You can reduce your taxable income when you contribute to this plan. Urbana: Faculty and Staff Emergency Fund Drive Spring 2022 Apr 14, 2022 8:00 am28 views The Emergency Fund needs your help! State of Illinois Budget Update Apr 13, 2022 8:00 am4 views Dear faculty, staff, students and friends: The new state budget passed by the Illinois General Assembly and expected to be signed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker will provide $655.2 million in general operating funds to the University of Illinois System for the coming fiscal year, as well as a $122 million increase for the Monetary Award Program (MAP), the state’s primary student financial aid program. The state budget for the 2023 fiscal year, which begins July 1, will increase the U of I System appropriation by 5 percent over the current year. The budget passed also applies an additional $28.1 million supplemental appropriation to the current fiscal year’s $622 million in state operating funds, essentially providing the fiscal year 2023 increase a year early. This marks the third consecutive year that legislators and the governor have maintained or increased U of I System funding. These increases signal continued recognition of the value the U of I System provides not only to our more than 94,000 students, but also to the state as a whole, and we are grateful to our legislators and governor for their investment in higher education. Highlights of the budget include: A $122 million increase for the state’s Monetary Award Program (MAP), which provides financial aid to Illinois students, including more than 22,000 across our U of I System universities in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield. $1.36 billion in total capital re-appropriations across the system, of which $496.7 million will support continued planning and construction of the U of I System's Discovery Partners Institute and the statewide Illinois Innovation Network. Additionally, $862.5 million of re-appropriated capital funds will support a number of ongoing construction projects across our three universities. $3 million in new funding for the Illinois Innocence Project at the University of Illinois Springfield, part of a national program that works to exonerate wrongfully convicted people and reform the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice. $2 million in new funding for the creation of a Climate Jobs Institute at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, to provide data, research and information that will help the state and its workforce transition to a clean-energy economy. In addition to the budget, the legislature also approved regulatory measures that streamline and improve procurement, allowing the university system to more effectively engage minority vendors and conduct business in the state. The measures also establish a taskforce to report on further procurement reforms needed to legislate in the fall veto session. We thank our U of I Caucus for its hard work and dedication during this budget process, and we appreciate the support of all of you in making the U of I System a powerful engine of progress for the state. We are grateful to Gov. Pritzker and the legislature for their ongoing partnership, reflected in this budget which makes vital investments in higher education. We look forward to further collaboration as we work to ensure our universities have the financial backing to continue to deliver for the people of Illinois. Sincerely, Tim Killeen, President, University of Illinois System Robert Jones, Chancellor, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Michael Amiridis, Chancellor, University of Illinois Chicago Karen Whitney, Interim Chancellor, University of Illinois Springfield Retirement and Investment Webinars Available! Apr 12, 2022 8:00 am73 views Are you interested in learning more about retirement planning and investment options available to you as a University of Illinois System employee? Retirement and investment education webinars are available through State Universities Retirement System (SURS) and University 403(b) Plan vendors TIAA and Fidelity. View details for each vendor below. MyBenefits: Review/Add Your Email Address Apr 6, 2022 8:00 am169 views Receive State-benefits notices from MyBenefits faster by providing your email address! Health Plan Reminder: Out-of-Network Providers Apr 5, 2022 8:00 am112 views You are encouraged to use in-network providers to receive the best value from your health plan. No matter which plan you are enrolled in, receiving health care from an out-of-network provider will significantly increase your out-of-pocket medical costs. Designate or Review Your Beneficiaries: State Life Insurance Mar 31, 2022 4:00 pm255 views Ensure your life insurance benefits are distributed according to your wishes by designating or reviewing your beneficiary designations for your State of Illinois Life Insurance coverage Policy and Leave Updates: FMLA, VESSA, and UFML Mar 31, 2022 3:00 pm143 views As a result of several recent legislative changes, the University of Illinois System has made some updates to the following leave benefits: Family and Medical Leave (FMLA), University Family Medical Leave (UFML) to care for a same-sex domestic partner or civil union partner, and Victims’ Economic Security and Safety Leave (VESSA). Support for our students, faculty and staff Mar 15, 2022 8:45 am0 views Dear students, faculty and staff: On behalf of the University of Illinois System, we are deeply outraged by the unprovoked and brutal invasion of Ukraine and the worsening humanitarian crisis facing the people there. We stand with the Association of Public & Land Grant Universities in sharply condemning the unnecessary use of force and calling for an end to this devastating conflict. During this very difficult time, the safety and well-being of our students and other members of our U of I community who are impacted by this tragedy are our No. 1 priority. Our three universities have been reaching out directly to offer support resources to students, staff and faculty who may be in need. As a university system, which welcomes students from all over the world and has a long history of global reach and partnership, we hold dear our values of inclusivity and treating each other with dignity and respect, and we advocate for peaceful diplomacy as the means to conflict resolution. We will continue to support each other and promote civility for every member of the U of I System community, at our universities in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield, across the country and around the world. We understand the situation may be very stressful and cause anxiety for some. If you need help, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the student or employee services office at your university. There are many available support resources, which are shown in the links below. Our deepest sympathy goes to all those who are suffering, and we stand firm in disavowing the violence and the destruction being forced upon the people of Ukraine. Sincerely, Tim KilleenPresident Avijit GhoshInterim Executive Vice President and Vice President for Academic Affairs Robert J. JonesChancellor, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Michael D. AmiridisChancellor, University of Illinois Chicago Karen M. WhitneyInterim Chancellor, University of Illinois Springfield Support Resources: StudentsUIUC Student Assistance Center or (217) 333-0050; firstname.lastname@example.org UIC Student Assistance Center UIS Counseling Center Support Resources: Faculty and StaffEmployee Assistance Programs Are You Retiring or Separating from the University of Illinois System? Mar 8, 2022 8:00 am268 views You may be eligible to defer unused vacation leave into the University 403(b), State 457, or SURS 457 retirement plans. Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program Limited Waiver Feb 21, 2022 1:30 pm371 views As a University of Illinois System employee, you may qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program. PSLF is a federal program that forgives the remaining balance on your Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer. America Saves Week Feb 18, 2022 10:00 am46 views Next week marks America Saves Week, an opportunity to focus on your savings strategy. University of Illinois System approved 403(b) retirement plan investment companies, TIAA and Fidelity Investments, offer tips and resources to help you get into a saving mindset. Know Your Approved Retirement Plan Representatives Feb 9, 2022 8:30 am200 views Be wary of callers attempting to discuss financial investments. Only a few representatives from investment companies are approved to discuss retirement planning. Keep Your Emergency Contacts Updated Feb 8, 2022 7:00 am94 views Do you have emergency contacts on file with the University of Illinois System? Are they current? It is important to keep up-to-date emergency contact information on file, so U of I System representatives know who to call on your behalf in the unfortunate event of an emergency or accident. February 2022 Wellness Connection Feb 3, 2022 8:30 am0 views The February 2022 Wellness Connection Newsletter is now available! In this issue: Trends of Excitement!, Freezer Breakfast Burritos, Having a Healthy Relationship with Food, The Benefits of Organizing your Home, and Interview with Angela Dietz. Announcing the 2022 Professional Staff Leadership Academy Cohort Jan 28, 2022 11:30 am139 views We are delighted to announce the selected participants for the 2022 Professional Staff Leadership Academy (PSLA). PSLA is designed to foster a culture of dynamic and transformational leadership for academic professional and civil service staff at all levels throughout the University of Illinois System. 403(b) Supplemental Retirement Plan - 2022 Universal Availability Notice Jan 26, 2022 10:00 am286 views 403(b) Supplemental Retirement Plan - 2022 Universal Availability Notice Report Your Address If Working Outside of Illinois Jan 21, 2022 12:00 pm91 views The Working Outside of Illinois Policy is a new University of Illinois System policy that provides guidelines to employees if they have been approved to work outside of Illinois.