Hwang Makes Support for Insurance Rate Critics

Updated: August 06, 2022 07:00 AM

HARTFORD – State Senator Tony Hwang has released tools and links to help people who want to make a statement before the State Insurance Dept. on August 15, as a selective review – in some cases – a request for double-digit health insurance. up to 24% next year. This year, there are 13 health insurance applications made by nine insurers.

Mr. Hwang, who is a member of the Newtown Legislative Delegation and the chairman of the Republican Committee on Insurance and Real Estate Committee and Public Health Committee, is also testifying directly to the Commissioner of State Insurance until the hearing date.

Along with his colleague and Senate GOP leader Kevin Kelly, Hwang also fought and succeeded in getting the case moved from the Insurance Dept. offices in Hartford, to the Legislative Office Building in the State Capitol complex.

“We also need a public hearing so that the affected people can express their concerns and oppose this,” Mr. Hwang said in a statement. Newtown Bee. “We want transparency and accountability from the insurance companies and CID for the people who will be burdened by these high costs.”

Until now, the CID’s review process at its traditional downtown office provided limited access and expertise to public testimony and participation in the review process on the merits of each proposal. This, Mr. Hwang said, is frustrating because it does not provide an opportunity to challenge and question the facts.

“Senate Republican Leader Kevin Kelly and I recently wrote to CID Commissioner Andrew Mais asking for the case to be delayed at the State Capitol and to give people and businesses a chance. We asked for a meeting to allow for transparency and accountability and we were contacted by CT Healthcare Advocate Ted Doolittle who shared our frustrations. our own and questioned the justification of this extraordinary increase.

Commissioner Mais has now agreed to hold a public meeting on Monday, August 15, starting at 9 am at the State Capitol. The hearing can also be viewed on CT-N online, on the CID Facebook page, or by calling in on the conference call line.

Hwang reminds anyone who wants to provide and share their testimony that they can email CID.RateFilings@ct.gov with their name and testimony, cc-ing the senator to Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov.

“I will personally present your evidence to the CID,” he said.

An email request is also required for those who wish to register to witness remotely via the MS Team video link.

AG’s Petition Denied

While the hearing was expected to be adjourned after a request from State Attorney William Tong, State Insurance Commissioner Andrew N. Mais said the case should continue as planned.

The AG said the delay was necessary because the US Senate is debating the Federal Advance Premium Tax Credit. At the CID’s request, these insurers made their investments in their exchanges under the assumption that these tax benefits would expire on January 1, 2023. This assumption was identified as the key driver behind the double-digit request rate, Tong said in a release.

“Increasing the tax credit would be a game changer, and would greatly reduce the need for an increase. It would be a neglect of our responsibility to consumers to continue to hear about prices built on what appears to be false. If Congress, as expected, votes to increase the Federal Advance Premium Tax Credits, requests it must be revised – to reflect the consumer’s savings – before that happens,” said Attorney General Tong.

Mais, on the other hand, said that it may be a good time to explain the process of the actuarial rate and how the government subsidies affect the prices of health insurance in order to resolve the conflict.

“Although Congress has not yet voted to increase the increase within the ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) of the Federal Advanced Premium Tax Credits and the continuation of the removal of the income limits for receiving these taxes, as a member of the Board of Care Affordable Care. Act (ACA) Exchange Access Health CT (AHCT), I’ve been very instrumental in developing this,” Mais said. “Indeed, during this year’s meetings with the members of the Connecticut delegation in Washington, I offered this support, they were pleased to hear from them and they also wholeheartedly supported the continuation and I thank them for all the work they have done to help consumers in Connecticut.”

Mais said the subsidy will reduce the cost of insurance for consumers once the appropriate rates are established.

“We are currently reviewing all the documents,” said the insurance commissioner. “Contrary to this, CID did not ask health care providers to assume that the ARPA extension will expire on 1/1/23. Instead, we previously asked each carrier to explain how they used the federal subsidy assumption in their 2023 budget calculations to be with the knowledge and flexibility to deal with any change.”

Anyone considering providing evidence, support, or opposition to the hearing panel can read supporting documents by visiting the following links:

Sen Kelly, Hwang Slam Health Insurance Rate Rate Increase – CLICK HERE

CT Republican Leaders Renew Invitation to Open State Capitol for Public Hearing on Health Insurance Increase – CLICK HERE

Sen. Kelly, Formica, and Hwang Letter to CT Insurance Committee 7-11 CLICK HERE

Response from Insurance Commissioner Andrew Mais to Sen Kelly, Sen Hwang on Clear and Clear Public Hearing Request – CLICK HERE

Department of Insurance has changed the notice of Public Hearing – CLICK HERE

Editor John Voket can be reached at john@thebee.com.

State Senator Tony Hwang (R28)