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HomeNewsArchivesV.I. Answer Desk: EDC Companies and Health Insurance

V.I. Answer Desk: EDC Companies and Health Insurance

Source reader Jane Higgins wants to know: "Are the companies that are receiving Economic Development Commission benefits in the territory required to offer or provide Health Insurance plans or coverage to their employees?"
To find out, the Source caught up with Alicia Barnes, assistant chief executive officer of the V.I. Economic Development Authority, which oversees the EDC program.
"They have to offer employment that is consistent with both local and federal labor laws," Barnes said Monday. Local and federal law do not require all employers to provide health benefits, so EDC companies are not required by law to all offer such benefits. But each company must meet the requirements of its specific EDC certificate agreement and as a general rule, those agreements involve health benefits, she said.
"Once the application is submitted, the prospective applicant would delineate their specific offerings to employees," she said. "We would negotiate if we feel there is a need for them to be increased and whatever is agreed upon becomes part of their certificate."
So health benefits are not required by law, but are frequently required by the specific EDC certificate. Those curious about a specific company can contact the EDA to peruse the particular agreement.

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