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Office of County Executive
Mark A. Hackel

Macomb Matters October 2016 Issue 47

Mark's Message
Employee Focus
For Your Benefit
Macomb County Casual Day Charitable Collections Program continues
Free Jazzercise until the end of the month
October 2016 Construction Report
New Hires/Retirees
Recipe Corner
Calendar of Events

Click for a pdf version of Macomb Matters.

Mark’s Message

So I don’t know if you’ve heard it yet, but on 96.3 WDVD and NASH FM 93.1, we are running an exciting new promotional campaign: Fall in Love with Macomb. In addition to radio spots, we are using Twitter, Facebook and to promote and highlight the county’s many quality-of-life destinations through this fall and beyond.

Fall in Love with Macomb is a joint partnership between Macomb County, the Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Macomb County Chamber of Commerce and local agricultural destinations. This is the perfect time of year to explore Macomb County’s 500 farms and to see how much the season has to offer. Our growing agricultural destinations have something for everyone.

However, in addition to apples, pumpkins and cider, Macomb's orchards and agricultural destinations want to challenge perceptions of the season by demonstrating other aspects of the business that may appeal to consumers beyond just the fall months. The promotion encourages residents and visitors to go beyond the bushel and fall in love with Macomb. We are even using the hashtag #BeyondTheBushel to promote this campaign on Twitter. From family-friendly farm activities to craft beverages, Macomb County growers are offering so many fresh and engaging experiences.

To plan your adventure, visit and follow Make Macomb Your Home on Twitter and Facebook. Also make sure to share your experience on social media by using #BeyondTheBushel and look for Fall in Love with Macomb filters on Snapchat.

I also wanted to take a minute to recognize Vicky Rad, our Planning and Economic Development deputy director. Vicky has been elected president of Women in Defense (WID) Michigan Chapter. Founded in 2007, WID has strived to promote and inspire women to become leaders in national security and defense efforts. To read more about her accomplishment, read our press release. Congratulations to Vicky on this awesome accomplishment.

Until next time, I hope you get a chance to Fall in Love with Macomb!

Employee Focus

Stephen Baurhenn – Department of Roads

By Sarah Cormier, Macomb County Executive Office

The work of the Macomb County Department of Roads is never done. There’s construction season in the spring/summer/fall and snow plowing and salting in the winter.

Stephen Baurhenn is one employee of the Roads Department who knows the seasons all too well. Currently a heavy truck driver, Baurhenn has worked for the department for over 18 years, moving up through the ranks. As a heavy truck driver, Baurhenn focuses on maintaining over 300 miles of gravel roads present in the county.

“It’s kind of like being a finished carpenter as opposed to a rough carpenter,” Baurhenn explained.

Baurhenn’s tasks include fixing potholes, filling in waterholes to make sure drainage isn’t obstructed and making sure the gravel is evenly distributed over the roadways. As with all of the county’s roadways, the winter is particularly tough on the gravel roads.

“The weather really has a lot to do with the condition of the gravel roads in the area,” said Baurhenn, who added that the job of heavy truck driver comes with a lot of variety. “Most of the time you are doing something different every day.”

A Chesterfield Township resident, Baurhenn said he spends his spare time working on his Jeep. 

“Steve is a reliable and well-respected employee at the service center,” said Roads Maintenance Superintendent Leo Ciavatta. “His dedication and constant response during the winter months is greatly appreciated.”

For Your Benefit

By Macomb County Human Resources and Labor Relations

Open Enrollment for 2017 will take place from Oct. 31 through Nov. 18. This is your opportunity to consider all of the benefit options available to you and your family and to elect a different plan for medical/vision and dental benefits, if you choose, without a qualifying event.

In addition, this is the only time employees can continue or begin participation in our Flexible Spending Account Program.

To make an informed decision about our 2017 benefit offerings, it is important to review and understand the differences between a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) and a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO).

Macomb County offers both a HMO and PPO option. Both HMOs and PPOs contract with doctors, hospitals, clinics, labs, pharmacies and medical equipment providers in an attempt to keep costs as low as possible while still providing necessary services. However, there are some significant differences between these types of plans.

HMOs require you to select a primary care physician (PCP). The PCP is responsible for your primary and coordinated care. Once you have selected your PCP, you and your family will receive care from providers within a chosen network.

If you or your eligible dependent require tests or care from a specialist, the PCP may have to provide a referral for those services. With HMOs, participating providers are required to submit claims directly to the insurance company and are not allowed to send a bill or charge you directly, with the exception of copays. Services will not be covered if you choose to see a physician or seek services outside of your network, except for emergencies.

PPOs do not require you to choose a PCP or obtain a referral to see other providers in the network. Under this plan, you are responsible for any deductibles, copays and coinsurance costs as defined in the plan document.

If you choose to see a provider outside of your network, you may be responsible for paying that provider and completing and submitting a claim form to the PPO in order to be reimbursed. Since the out-of-network deductible and coinsurance is usually higher than in-network, you will be responsible to pay more because only part of the bill may be eligible for reimbursement. In addition, an out-of-network provider does not have to accept the amount the PPO is willing to pay and can bill you for the amount that the insurance company does not pay.

Which is better?  The answer to that question depends on your health care needs. PPO plans are more flexible; however, an HMO may be better in terms of cost.

For more information on the 2017 Open Enrollment, please refer to the information sent from Human Resources and Labor Relations or contact us at (586) 469-5650.

Macomb County Casual Day Charitable Collections Program continues

The Board of Commissioners is pleased to announce the continuation of the Macomb County Casual Day Charitable Collections Program. Participating employees (with department leader permission) may wear casual clothing to work on Fridays (or other designated day) if they donate at least a dollar. Participating departments will be monitored, and donations should be sent in a timely fashion. Collected donations are sent by the Board Office to the assigned charities.

Employees, or anyone, who would like to submit the name of a charity to be considered as a recipient for Casual Day collections next year should turn in written requests to the Board Office no later than Friday, Dec. 2. All requests should be written on letterhead from a designated official of the charity and must be accompanied by a current 501(c)(3) certificate and solicitation license from the State Attorney General’s Office.

The Casual Day program was first adopted by resolution of the Board of Commissioners in 1994, and it has continued to grow thanks to Macomb County employees' commitment to helping others. Since the program’s inception, nearly $675,000 has been donated by our generous employees to various charities.

If you have questions, or need more information about this program, please contact Laura Murphy at (586) 465-9185.

Click here to view the eligibility criteria for the Macomb County Casual Day Program.

Free Jazzercise until the end of the month

New customers, or those who have not attended the Jazzercise Mount Clemens Fitness Center the past six months, can try classes for FREE for one week now through Oct. 31.  

Jazzercise Mount Clemens offers 32 classes per week and nine class formats to choose from including: Dance Mixx, Interval, Fusion, Strike, Strength, Express and Lo.  

The fitness center is located on Groesbeck and N. Rose, across from the Mount Clemens Ice Arena. Click here for contact information and complete schedule:

Mention you are a state of Michigan or Macomb County employee and receive 10 percent off of a six- or 12-month membership.

This is the final week for this special employee discount offer. Don’t forget promotions/discounts like these can always be found in the Employee Discounts (Perks at Work) site.