Loyola University Chicago

Human Resources


February 2018 Human Resources Updates

Dear Faculty and Staff,
Welcome to the beginning of another semester. Human Resources is pleased to provide updates and announce new programs and services available to our Loyola community. Please review the information below about how you can earn cash rewards through Blue Cross Blue Shield’s Vitals Member Rewards or by participating in Wellness Program initiatives offered through EMERGE. In addition, as we transition into spring, we encourage you to take a few moments to refresh your memory on the financial incentives offered by the Loyola Credit Union.
Vitals Member Rewards
If you’re enrolled in the Loyola medical plan and your doctor has recommended a medical procedure, the procedure may be more cost effective with a specific health care provider. As a part of your Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois health plan, you and your eligible dependents can use the Member Rewards benefit. Simply contact a Benefits Value Advisor (BVA) to help you shop for medical care, save on out-of-pocket costs, and earn cash rewards for the choices you make. Check the back of your medical ID card for the BVA Customer Service number.
Federal Tax Update Announcement
On December 22, President Trump signed H.R. 1, also known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, into law. The legislation changes the taxability of two fringe benefits and affects income tax withholding in 2018 and beyond.
The IRS recently released the new tax withholding tables that reflect the new tax rates for employees. The University’s payroll system has been updated to include these new tax tables. As a result, biweekly employees may see a change in their paycheck beginning February 9 and monthly employees on February 15. No action is required by employees as a result of this change.
We will use the W-4 forms already on file to adjust your withholding. However, employees may update their withholding elections at any time by submitting a new Federal W-4 form to Human Resources. Please visit the IRS FAQ website for additional information regarding this change.
Transamerica Retirement Services
The beginning of the calendar year is a good time to review your retirement contribution percentage. The maximum contribution limits are $18,500 or $24,500 (if you are 50 years old or older). In addition, it is critical that your beneficiary information is in order according to your estate plan. Beneficiary information and contribution percentages can be updated online. If you would like to meet with a Transamerica representative to discuss financial planning, please schedule a one-on-one meeting.
CVS Caremark—Your New Pharmacy Benefits Manager
As communicated during Open Enrollment, CVS Caremark now manages your prescription benefits. Prescription cards were mailed to all Loyola medical plan participants for receipt in January. Virtual prescription cards are also available by registering at caremark.com/startnow. Digital benefits include locating network pharmacies, refilling medications, reviewing drug costs, and tracking your prescription history. New convenience options are also now available, including at-home medication delivery or 90-day supply subscriptions—a money-saving option. Learn more online or contact CVS Caremark at 800.863.5488.
Health and Wellness Benefits
Do your 2018 health and wellness plans include getting in better shape, quitting smoking, or saving more money for retirement? We recommend signing up for an upcoming financial planning EMERGE course. You can also read the Health and Wellness Insights monthly newsletter, or watch the wellness videos on the Health Maintenance Institute’s website.
Get Ready! 2018’s Go Move Challenge
Loyola is participating with 19 other Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities members in the sixth annual Go Move Challenge, February 1–28. The friendly fitness competition is designed to inspire participants to incorporate valuable health and wellness activities into their routines, while determining which university can accumulate the most minutes of movement in one month. The first 30 participants to reach and track 500 minutes will win a special prize. In addition, the Loyola department averaging the most minutes of activity will win a healthy treat. Need inspiration? Check out the Go Move Challenge video.
EMERGE—Professional and Personal Development
Seats are available for February’s upcoming EMERGE classes. A number of brand new personal, professional, and wellness seminars have been added to enrich your workplace experience. Whether you are in a leadership role or a member of a team, you will find a program in which you can increase your knowledge and strengthen your skills. Visit the EMERGE site for details on upcoming courses.
Consumer Discounts
Review your planned major expenses for 2018, and check out the discounts website to learn more about a number of savings offered to Loyola faculty and staff.
Loyola Credit Union
If you’re planning on “spring cleaning” your credit cards or purchasing real estate this year, consider signing up for a Loyola Credit Union membership. Many discount opportunities are available, including reduced credit card and mortgage interest rates. For more information, contact the Credit Union at 708.216.4500.
For additional details on all of these updates, visit LUC.edu/hr.
Winifred L. Williams, PhD
Vice President for Human Resources
Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer