LETTER: ColoradoCare Will Benefit Many Businesses

Bill Hudson’s in-depth coverage about ColoradoCare in his five-part series — Death and Taxes… and ColoradoCare — has been very informative. I enjoyed reading as he explored the topic, first by talking at length with an opponent of ColoradoCare, then via research about ColoradoCare. It felt like we were with him on his quest to know more.

I too am researching the pros and cons of ColoradoCare — Amendment 69. Below are some of the things I have found out that might shed some light on one of the highest profile opposition groups to ColoradoCare: Coloradans for Coloradans.

Kelly Brough, the CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce is one of the co-chairs of Coloradans for Coloradans. It begs the question: Why would the Chamber of Commerce oppose a plan that will benefit many business owners? Whose interest do the chambers serve: their own or their members? Perhaps, the Chamber’s opposition to ColoradoCare has something to do with the fact that chambers of commerce often offer group health insurance plans to their members… a good way to maintain their membership numbers and increase their revenues.

Maybe Chamber opposition has to do with the fact that a significant percentage of the National Chamber of Commerce’s funding comes from the for-profit insurance industry — which will be greatly impacted if Colorado passes Amendment 69.

When Colorado businesses run the numbers on ColoradoCare, I suspect that some — especially those that do not currently provide insurance for their employees — will pay more under ColoradoCare, but many will come out ahead if Amendment 69 passes.

For those businesses who currently provide health care, ColoradoCare’s 6.67% of payroll is much more affordable than the average business usually pays for provide health benefits for its employees. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation Health Research & Educational Trust 2014 Employer Health Benefits Survey, the average annual premium for family health insurance coverage is now $16,834 – way above 6.67% of most employees salaries.

A business owner who is not currently providing health benefits might oppose Amendment 69. But that business’ employees may wind up with some high-deductible policy that might bankrupt them if they have to actually use it. Or, they might be uninsured or on Medicaid, so our tax dollars will pay for that person’s health care.

Follow the money: who stands to lose if ColoradoCare passes? Those are the groups — like the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce, perhaps — that we will see opposing the plan.

Donna Young
Canon City, CO

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