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Health Care Financing

Author: Shawn Shouldice Date: March 19, 2014

During the first few days of the current Legislative session back in January, Governor Shumlin took the unusual step of directly addressing the Legislature’s Joint Health Care Committees.  Throughout his remarks he clearly stated that he was still enthusiastically dedicated to the idea of moving Vermont towards a single payer healthcare system.  He also promised during that meeting that he would deliver a single payer financing plan to the legislature this spring.  He made this promise after having missed the statutory deadline in January 2013, last year.  However, on March 10, the Governor reneged on his commitment and said that his Administration would not be presenting a financing plan this year. “We’re not ready, it’s as simple as that,… All I’m saying is let’s get this right. That’s more important than meeting some arbitrary deadlines.” Shumlin stated at a press conference.

 

The Governor was unequivocal in his belief that the delay in presenting financing options would not set back Vermont’s plan to launch Green Mountain Care in 2017. “We’re going to take the time we need to get it right without slowing down, I hope, the goal of having this done on January 1st, 2017,” he said.

 

However, the further delay was immediately seized upon by both Democrats and Republicans.  For their part, Republicans have accused Shumlin of playing politics with his financing plans, saying that he’s putting off revealing tax options that could be unpopular until after the 2014 elections.  It is widely believed that some sort of elevated payroll tax on Vermont employers will be required to fund a single payer system.  Many Democrats were equally critical of the Governor.  Soon after the Governor’s announcement, Cynthia Browning, D-Arlington, sent a public records request to Shumlin’s health care financing expert asking to see the work he’s completed thus far on tax options to pay for Green Mountain Care.  She was clearly frustrated by Shumlin’s decision to delay the presentation of financing options to lawmakers. “It is past time that this administration was asked to stand and deliver,” Browning stated.  She believes that there are many Democrats who support single-payer, but want to know how the Administration plans to pay for it.

 

Contact legislator(s), members can also leave a message for your legislator(s) at 800-322-5616.  Members should also contact the House Speaker Shap Smith, speaker@leg.state.vt.us, 802 -828-2245, Senate Pres Pro-Tem John Campbell, senprespt@leg.state.vt.us, 802-828-3806, and Governor Peter Shumlin, governorvt@state.vt.us, 800-649-6825.

 

Contact members of the Governor's Business Advisory Council on Health Care Financing and urge them to ask the Governor for his plan. 

 

David Coates

295 Coates Island Rd.

Colchester, VT 05446-5790

Email: dcoates802@aol.com

 

Ernie Pomerleau

Pomerleau Real Estate

69 College Street

Burlington VT, 05401

Tel: 802-863-8210

Email: epomerleau@vermontrealestate.com

 

Steve Voigt

King Arthur Flour

135 US Rte. 5 South

Norwich VT, 05055

Tel: 800-827-6836

Email: steve.voigt@kingarthurflour.com

 

Sarah Byers, Owner/President

Leonardo’s Pizza

P.O. Box 486

Burlington, VT 05402

Tel: 802-863-8404

E-mail: sarasbyers@comcast.net

 

Andrew Brewer

Onion River Sports

20 Langdon St.

Montpelier, VT 05602

Tel: 802-229-9409

Email: TheOnions@onionriver.com

 

Win Smith

Sugarbush Resort

Sugarbush Access Rd.

Warren, VT 05674

Tel:  802-583-6300

Email: wsmithjr49@gmail.com

 

Bob Britt, CFO

SB Electronics

81 Parker Road

Barre, VT 05641

Tel: 802-476-4146

Email: info@sbelectronics.com

 

Barbara Grimes

Burlington Electric Department

585 Pine Street

Burlington, VT 05401-4891

Tel: 802-658-0300

Email:  webGeneralManager@BurlingtonElectric.com

 

Tom Torti

Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce

60 Main Street, Suite 100

Burlington, VT 05401

Tel:  802-863-3489 ext. 202

Email:  tom@vermont.org,

 

Lisa Ventriss

Vermont Business Roundtable

30 Kimball Avenue, Suite 302

South Burlington, Vermont 05403

Tel: 802-865-0410

Email: lisa@vtroundtable.org

 

Paul Millman

Chroma

10 Imtec Lane

Bellows Falls, VT 05101

Tel: 802-428-2500

Email:  pmillman@chroma.com

 

Ken Perine

National Bank of Middlebury

30 Main Street

Middlebury, VT 05753

Tel:  877-508-8455

Email: info@nbmvt.com

 

Larry Cassidy

Windham and Windsor Housing Trust

68 Birge Street

Brattleboro, VT 05301

Tel:  802-254-4604

Email: lcassidy@w-wht.org

 

John Valente

Ryan, Smith, and Carbine, Ltd

98 Merchants Row, PO Box 310

Rutland, VT 05702-0310

Tel: 802-786-1037

Email: jwv@rsclaw.com

Don Mayer

Small Dog Electronics

1673 Main Street

Waitsfield, VT 05673

Tel: 802-496-7171 x611

Email: don@smalldog.com

 

Janet Bombardier

IBM

972B

Essex Junction, VT, 05452

Tel: 802-769-6090

Email: jbombard@us.ibm.com

 

Bram Kleppner

Danforth Pewter

52 Seymour St, PO Box 828

Middlebury, VT 05753

Tel: 802-388-8666 x233

Email: bkleppner@danforthpewter.com

 

Kerry O’Brien

Commando

472 Meadowland Drive, Suite 10 south

Burlington, VT 05403

Tel: 800-506-6880

 

Tim Briglin

Tuckerman Capital

80 South Main Street Hanover, NH 03755

Tel: 603-640-2291

Email: tim@tuckermancapital.com

 

Dimitri Garder

Global-Z

395 Shields Drive

Bennington, VT 05201

Tel: 802-445-1011

Email: info@globalz.com

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