Conn. Gubernatorial Candidate Proposes Universal Health Plan

By | April 17, 2006

Max Kothari, owner of a kitchen remodeling shop in Hartford, said it bothers him that some of his 12 employees have to choose between shelling out hundreds of dollars a month in insurance premiums or skipping the coverage altogether.

“Some of my employees can’t afford to have any coverage because they can’t afford to pay any deductibles,” said Kothari. “People are making very hard choices.”

Kothari welcomed Democratic gubernatorial candidate John DeStefano, the mayor of New Haven, to his Express Kitchen showroom on Wednesday to release a plan the mayor says will make affordable health care available to everyone in Connecticut.

DeStefano released his $350 million plan on the same day Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney signed into law a landmark bill designed to guarantee virtually all Massachusetts residents have health insurance.

DeStefano said his plan is similar, but creates incentives to encourage businesses to participate.

The mayor’s proposal would create a private health insurance one-stop consortium from which small businesses, families and individuals can buy health coverage. It also would eliminate $350 million worth of corporate tax credits to help pay for the program.

DeStefano’s Democratic opponent, Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy, said he proposed months ago plans to provide universal health care for children, and open the state’s health care pool to small businesses and the self employed.

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