In yesterday’s Insurance Committee meeting, SB-11 was amended to delay CT’s insurance exchange negotiating premiums with insurers and changed “shall” to “may”, essentially making the legislation irrelevant. The exchange has refused to negotiate with insurers in the past, arguing among other things that it was too early to worry about high premiums. Since last year, exchanges across the country have set rates and, as predicted, CT’s premiums are the highest among state-based exchanges. Six other states, including our three neighboring states, successfully negotiate rates and have secured better deals for their residents. Negotiating premiums is only one of several options available to the state to make coverage affordable; CT’s exchange has adopted none of them. CT’s exchange could cover 216,000 state residents.