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June 17, 2009

Re:    S-1651/A-2238, Mandates Certain Health Benefits


Dear Mayor:

Please urge your State Senator to vote “No” on S-1651/A-2238, which is scheduled for final legislative action in the Senate tomorrow. This initiative would mandate health benefits coverage for certain therapies for the treatment of autism and other developmental disabilities.

Local budget makers in 2009 struggle to serve their fellow citizens and balance their budgets in the midst of the mortgage crisis, the market crisis, the banking crisis and the unemployment crisis, while absorbing State cuts from crucial municipal revenue replacement funding and inaction on our requests for mandates relief. At this time, we should not be forced to fund any new insurance benefits.

The Office of Legislative Services has estimated that this bill could cost the State Health Benefits Program and the School Employees Health Benefits Program up to $85.8 million, a year. Even without this new mandate, municipalities have been warned to expect SHBP premium increases in the range of 20%.

Accordingly, we urge you to contact your State Senator today. Please ask that official to vote “No” on S-1651/A-2238.

If you have any questions, please contact Jon Moran at 609-695-3481, ext. 121.

Very truly yours,

William G. Dressel, Jr.
Executive Director




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