For Immediate Release

November 13, 2013

Contact: Rep. Don Turner 802-373-5960 Senator Joe Benning 802-274-1346

Vermont Republican Caucus leaders call on the Governor to delay Employer and Individual Mandates to Purchase Health Insurance on Vermont Health Connect, Vermont’s online healthcare exchange, through December 31, 2014.

MONTPELIER – Vermont Republican Caucus leaders Senator Joe Benning (R-Caledonia) and Representative Don Turner (R-Milton) today called upon the Governor to delay employer and individual mandates to purchase health insurance on Vermont Health Connect, Vermont’s online healthcare exchange through December 31, 2014.

The two sent a letter to Governor Shumlin which states the following ”It is obvious that the system now intended to connect Vermonters to their new health insurance is not fully operational. None of us are sure of when it will be so. Too many Vermonters, now with insurance, are needlessly anxious about whether they will be able to retain any insurance at all while the system is fixed. The system should be fully operational before mandates are applied.

Enclosed you will find two bills being introduced simultaneously in the House and Senate. The purpose of these bills is to delay through 2014 the employer and individual mandate requiring the purchase of health insurance through the Exchange.

Granting this delay will also allow the legislature, and you, to institute changes to perfect this system. If it is within your power to grant this delay without waiting for legislative approval, we would encourage you to do so.”

Turner and Benning issued a press release adding, “Vermonters should continue to have access to their current insurance plans while continuing to work to improve the Vermont Health Connect system. We strongly feel this is the only way to ensure that Vermonters will have access to quality health care services and affordable health insurance on Jan. 1, 2014, and beyond. The well-being of Vermonters is still at risk. It’s our job to represent their interests as we promised. We will continue to do our jobs and today we take another step that will result in a positive outcome for Vermonters. Vermonters deserve it.”

Thank you


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