21 Nov

Making the Business Case for Health Reform

An evening with Wendell Potter
Monday, November 25, 2019
6:30–8pm
Good Work Greenhouse
65 St. James St, Kingston
Out of control health care costs are hurting our business community. Companies large and small can no longer afford the annual double-digit cost increases. Each year, our businesses and our employees pay more for less care. The employer-based health insurance system is unsustainable and it’s holding back a whole new generation of entrepreneurs.
 

[ Business for Medicare for All ]This event is hosted by Business for Medicare for All, a new independent and non-partisan business organization making the economic case for reforming our broken health care system. The organization is growing fast and now has nearly 3,000 members across the country.Join Wendell Potter, a former Cigna insurance executive turned health care reform whistleblower, to hear more about the organization and how you can harness your voice as a business leader, CEO, entrepreneur, or sole proprietor in support of creating a health care system that works for businesses and employees. 

Potter, the president of Business for Medicare for All, will also reveal the propaganda techniques and talking points that the insurance and pharmaceutical companies will deploy to stop proposals like Medicare for All. After the presentation, Potter will engage in a Q&A and discussion on how to mobilize other businesses in your community.  

The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.
 

About Wendell Potter
Wendell Potter - Montrose Street - cropped.jpgPotter has been called the “Daniel Ellsberg of corporate America” by Michael Moore and “a straight shooter” by Bill Moyers. After resigning from his job as the vice-president of corporate communications at Cigna in 2008, Potter became a single-payer advocate and activist. He testified before the U.S. Congress in 2009 on tactics used by the health insurance industry to advocate against healthcare reform. He’s the author of several books, including 2009’s “Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR Is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans.” He lives in Philadelphia.About Business for Medicare for All
Business for Medicare for All is a national 501c3 non-profit organization that is educating and organizing the business community in support of fixing our broken health care system. Founded in 2019 by Richard Master, the CEO of MCS Industries in Easton, PA, and Wendell Potter, a former health insurance executive turned whistleblower, the organization now represents nearly 3,000  business leaders in 49 states. Learn more: www.businessformedicareforall.org
19 Apr

NYSBC’s 2018 Priority Issue Areas

Based on feedback from our members and our ongoing work, we have identified a broad array of bills in the NYS legislature in need of your support. These bills can be grouped into the following 4 issue areas: Healthcare, Toxic Chemicals, Solar Energy, and Fossil Fuels.

On April 25th, 10am – 4pm, we will be convening business leaders in Albany for our 5th annual NY Sustainable Business Summit, where will will speak with policymakers on these issues.  (more information and registration for our 2018 Summit)

HEALTHCARE
Arguably the most transformative bill on our docket is the NY Health Act, which — if passed — would establish a comprehensive single-payer system of access to health insurance and would replace private insurance company coverage in NYS.  For small businesses, startups, and low margin sectors, this means eliminating the bureaucratic maze and high costs of buying health coverage for employees. We believe it would make New York dramatically more attractive to businesses looking to relocate. and their future employees.  The NY Health Act gained steam last year as our federal healthcare system was under fire, and your business voice can help push it across the finish line this legislative session.

TOXIC CHEMICALS
On a related note, we have identified bills that would reduce our exposure to toxic chemicals. The Toxic Show & Tell act is a powerful bill with a playful name that creates an important framework for addressing this issue.  The State would maintain a list of chemicals of high concern to children and require product makers to disclose their presence in children’s products sold in NYS. We believe smarter chemical regulations will drive green technology innovation, and transparency throughout the supply chain is good for business as it will allow our product makers and retailers — and their customers — to make informed decisions. We will educate Summit attendees and lawmakers on additional bills including the Drug Take Back Act which calls for a statewide program paid for by pharmaceutical manufacturers to manage the disposal of their products and reduce their contamination of NYS waters.

SOLAR ENERGY
After years of healthy growth in New York State’s solar industry, the corporate power utilities managed to erect a major barrier to solar in the form of the VDER regulation passed by New York’s Public Service Commission (PSC) last year.  The rate of solar growth in NYS has since been declining. This barrier hurts our NYS solar installers and blocks you and your business in particular from the community solar opportunities that would otherwise be more abundant and accessible today.  Between now (as I type this email) and our Summit, we expect a bill to be introduced that would delay the rollout of VDER statewide for 3 years and direct the PSC to fix these problems with the VDER regulation during that time. It gets more complicated, of course, so expect a thorough breakdown at the Summit.  In addition, we are supporting a bill that would extend for 2 years the New York City solar property tax abatement, which sunsets at the end of this year. These 2 bills would provide the much-needed boost for the NYS solar industry and would benefit all New Yorkers and New York State businesses seeking to source their power from the sun.

FOSSIL FUELS
And while our planet basks in sunlight, NYS’s pension fund (3rd largest in the nation) invests more than $5 billion in fossil fuels — orders of magnitude greater than investments in renewables.  In response, we support the Fossil Fuel Divestment bill that would immediately stop new investments in fossil fuel companies and transition current investments within 5 years with coal investments being dropped in year one. With the growing riskiness of fossil fuel investments, this transition makes good economic sense.  Although the bill doesn’t specify where the $5 billion should be reinvested, we aim to highlight that the clean energy sector is growing at nearly double the rate of the overall economy. Also, clean energy investment creates three times as many jobs as the equivalent investment in fossil fuels, so New York has a genuine opportunity to invest in New York’s clean energy businesses to ensure their success, growth, and ability to employ more and more New Yorkers.