Business Community Agrees: Stop New Health Mandates

04.08.2010
Issues & Policies

The cost of health insurance is a major stumbling block to Connecticut businesses—hurting their ability to provide their employees with quality health care and operate their companies as effectively as possible.

That’s why three of the state’s larger chambers of commerce sent a strong, united message to lawmakers this week: Stop passing laws that will only push health care costs even higher in Connecticut.

At a press conference at the Legislative Office Building on Tuesday, the chambers (Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce, Central Connecticut Chambers of Commerce, and Northwest Connecticut’s Chamber of Commerce) said the last thing employers need in this tough economy is for their health care costs to be driven even higher by new health care mandates.

What’s worse, health insurance mandates especially and unfairly hit small businesses. That’s because these mandates impact companies that are fully insured. In most cases, these are small companies that can’t afford to self-insure.

Companies that can bear the financial risk (typically larger companies) can choose to be self-insured and therefore free from the state’s mandated insurance benefits.

CBIA strongly agrees with the chambers. Lawmakers need to recognize the financial hardship that these health mandates levy upon small businesses. Passing any legislation that makes health insurance more expensive will only compel companies to drop coverage or have their employees pick up a greater portion of the cost.

Neither of these outcomes is good. The unfortunate reality is that lawmakers are positioning themselves to approve over a dozen new or expanded mandates.

These mandates are embodied in seven separate bills, with one bill (HB-5009) containing seven mandates alone. The other measures are: SB-50, SB-92, SB-259, SB- 260, SB-392, and HB-5212. Lawmakers should heed the chambers of commerce and reject these health care cost-drivers.

Connecticut’s small companies simply can’t afford them.

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CBIA IS FIGHTING TO MAKE CONNECTICUT A TOP STATE FOR BUSINESS, JOBS, AND ECONOMIC GROWTH. A BETTER BUSINESS CLIMATE MEANS A BRIGHTER FUTURE FOR EVERYONE.