In The News: Health Care

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Taxpayer advocate says city health insurance deal not so sweet

Oct 28 2012

By Alex Bloom, The Enterprise

“It’s clearly a step in the right direction and the savings are meaningful,” Michael Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, said of the deal Mayor Linda Balzotti signed Thursday with the unions. “But if city officials had adopted the municipal health law, they certainly could’ve saved more.”
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Cost cut supporters see many ways to meet health care law’s goals

Oct 16 2012

By Andy Metzger, State House News Service / Westwood Press

Critics have also expressed concern over the methods of bringing down costs in earlier versions of the bill, though one such critic – Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation President Michael Widmer – said the final version was a big improvement. “The most onerous provisions in the House bill were not included in the final bill, which is clearly a positive step,” Widmer told the News Service. “So I think the final bill broadly strikes the right balance between setting an ambitious target for cost growth on the one hand, but giving the marketplace the flexibility to achieve that target.”
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Reclaiming Politics

Oct 4 2012

By Michael Gecan, Boston Review

And cost increases have been modest—far below the predictions of the law’s opponents. The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, an independent nonprofit research outfit, concluded that “additional state spending attributable to the health reform law accounted for only 1.4 percent of the Commonwealth’s $32 billion budget in fiscal 2011.”
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Fact Checking the Presidential Debate in Denver

Oct 3 2012

ABC News

Michael Widmer, from Massachusetts Taxpayer Foundation (non-partisan group) says both the Massachusetts legislature and Romney DID come together to get everyone in the state insured. They had the same goal and were successful. Yes, Romney put out the idea, but the legislature helped to craft the plan.
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Employee retirement costs crippling cities

Oct 1 2012

By Grant Welker, Sentinel and Enterprise

Though these benefits more than double the size of pension liabilities in most of the state's largest cities, according to the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, they haven't been in the news as much or as debated as pensions. That's because they aren't as popular a benefit in other parts of the country, and because OPEB is just now getting to the point of becoming a critical issue as pensions were 20 years ago, said Carolyn Ryan, a policy analyst with the foundation.
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Cost cut supporters see many ways to meet health care law's goals

Oct 1 2012

By Andy Metzger, State House News Service / Somerville Journal

“The most onerous provisions in the House bill were not included in the final bill, which is clearly a positive step,” Widmer told the News Service. “So I think the final bill broadly strikes the right balance between setting an ambitious target for cost growth on the one hand, but giving the marketplace the flexibility to achieve that target.”
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Massachusetts Businesses Pleased with Health-Care Reform

Sep 11 2012

By Dylan Scott, Governing

According to Michael Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, the percentage of small businesses that offer health insurance has increased from 70 percent to 77 percent since then-Gov. Mitt Romney signed the bill into law in 2006.
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Not all communities find ways to save on health insurance costs

Sep 2 2012

By Michael Morton, MetroWest Daily News

"My impression is that communities are going to do this in steps and not go all the way to the GIC level in one bite," said Michael Widmer, president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, which pushed for the legislation after years of research and advocacy.
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Mass. health law may bode well for federal law

Aug 23 2012

By Steve LeBlanc, The Bulletin / AP

A recent study by the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation found that during the five full fiscal years since it was implemented, the law has cost the state an additional $91 million a year after federal reimbursements — well within initial projections.
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Patrick signs bill tackling health care costs

Aug 6 2012

By Matt Murphy, Michael Norton and Colleen Quinn, State House News Service / Rockland Standard

Among those attending the sign ceremony were Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation President Michael Widmer, Massachusetts Association of Health Plans President Lora Pellegrini, Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce President Paul Guzzi, Retailers Association of Massachusetts President Jon Hurst and Massachusetts Biotechnology Council President Robert Coughlin.
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