The board established rules and regulations for the administration and management of group life and health insurance programs for state of Minnesota employees, and negotiated contracts for these programs with insurance companies. Legislation passed in 1943 authorized the state, through an insurance board composed of the governor, the commissioner of insurance, and the state treasurer, to provide group life and health insurance to its officers and employees. Premiums were to be paid by the insured employees via payroll deduction; the state was explicitly prohibited from contributing to the cost of coverage (Laws 1934 chap. 615; Minn. Stat. 1949, s471.61).
In 1953 a formally named State Employees Insurance Board was created, and its membership was increased to five with the addition of two state employees to be elected for four-year terms by the state's employees (Laws 1953 chap. 696; Minn. Stat. 15.35-15.37). Insurance coverage for employees' dependents was added in 1961 (Laws 1961 chap. 285). In 1965, new legislation directed that the state pay for life insurance and health benefit coverage for all regular employees in the state classified civil service. The former board was superseded by a State Employees Insurance Benefit Board, composed of the governor, the state treasurer, the state auditor, the secretary of state, the attorney general, the insurance commissioner, the director of civil service, the commissioner of administration, and the two elected state employees. The nature of contracts with insurance companies, and the board's authorization for negotiating them, were also redefined. (Laws 1965 chap. 780; Minn. Stat. 1965, s43.42-43.49). Subsequent legislation made various changes in coverage and in the definition of eligibility (see especially Laws 1967 chap.103 and Laws 1967 chap.759).
In 1973 the board was abolished and its duties assumed by the newly established department of personnel and its commissioner (Laws 1973 chap. 507 s35).