The Small Business Health Fairness Act
February 4, 2003
The Honorable Olympia Snowe
Senate Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee
Washington, DC 20510
Dear Madam Chairwoman:
On behalf of the United States Chamber of Commerce, the world's largest business federation representing over three million employers and organizations of every size, sector and region, I would like to thank you for your sponsorship of legislation to establish Association Health Plans (AHPs) under ERISA. "The Small Business Health Fairness Act" will enable small businesses to provide valuable and affordable health benefits to their employees.
As you know, the number of uninsured Americans continues to grow and the escalating cost of providing health care benefits has left many small business owners and employees unable to find affordable health plans. It is time for Congress to allow small businesses the opportunity to band together through well-established, bona fide trade and professional associations to purchase affordable health coverage. AHPs will help level the playing field and give participating small employers the same advantages as large employers and unions. AHPs will help small businesses lower their health care costs through economies of scale, administrative savings, and design flexibility. Ultimately, AHPs will help expand access to many uninsured small business workers.
Again, I would like to thank you for your leadership and we look forward to working with you to address the many health care challenges confronting small businesses.
R. Bruce Josten
Executive Vice President, Government Affairs
U.S. Chamber of Commerce