FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 08, 2006
Assembly's Unlimited Mental Health Mandate:
A Baseless Gesture Certain to Increase Premiums
ALBANY – The Assembly's passage of an unlimited mental health
mandate – A.2912/S.6735 – is another "hollow gesture" aimed at silencing
mental health advocates, which again fails to provide true "parity" for
New York's small business community. There is virtually no chance that
it will pass the Senate in its present form.
Passage of A.2912/S.6735 – which if enacted would be the broadest mental
health and substance abuse mandate in the nation – blatantly ignores
the overwhelming need for affordable health insurance faced by New
York's small business owners and sole proprietors.
"New York is experiencing a health insurance crisis. We don't need more
of the same. Our state needs a plan that offers true "parity" by
setting a level playing field between small businesses and companies
that can self-insure," said Jeff Leland, chair of the Employer Alliance
for Affordable Health Care. "The Assembly ignored this need – this time
even failing to offer a small business tax credit as they did in the
2004 session," added Leland. “Regardless of your position on this issue,
we can all agree that A.2912 will increase health insurance premiums,
and that is a reality that New York premium payers can not afford."
A.2912 is the wrong bill at the wrong time. We encourage the Senate to
stand strong on its commitment to exclude New York's business community
from the burden of costly mandates.
The Employer Alliance for Affordable Health Care is the largest
single-issue grassroots business coalition in New York State. Members
are committed to preserving quality, affordable health insurance by
opposing costly mandates that contribute to New York's uninsured. For
more information, visit www.employeralliance.com.