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For Immediate Release

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April 3, 2012

Businesses Express Concern About Federal Health Care Reform in Texas Comptroller Survey

(AUSTIN) — Texas Comptroller Susan Combs today released results of a survey in which hundreds of Texas business owners gave their thoughts on federal health care reform. The majority of respondents expressed concern about the legislation.  

“Texas businesses drive our state’s vibrant economy and it’s important to know how they feel health care legislation will affect them,” Combs said. “Nearly two-thirds of business owners responding to our survey said federal health care reform would be bad for business, while only about 3.5 percent said it would be good for business. I am very concerned the burden that businesses feel will in turn stifle our economic growth.”

More than 900 owners of large and small businesses responded to the survey and the results are compiled in Texas Business Attitudes Toward Federal Health Care Reform.

Other survey results show:

  • More than half the respondents anticipate an increase in the cost of benefits due to health care reform; about a third does not know how costs might be affected; and about 12 percent expect decreased costs.

  • When asked if federal health care reform has affected hiring decisions, more than 12 percent of respondents said they have already reduced staffing and nearly 25 percent anticipate eliminating or reducing employee health coverage.

  • More than 100 of the over 900 respondents said they have already reduced or eliminated coverage due to health care reform and a similar number anticipate doing so within the next 2 years.

“In response to federal health care legislation, Texas business owners are already reducing or eliminating health care coverage for employees, raising prices for goods and services, and delaying growth due to uncertainty about future costs,” said Combs. “This legislation is already negatively impacting our economy; we must find a better path to affordable health care.”

The report also includes information regarding market-based solutions for health insurance, such as pooling arrangements, tax incentives and state health care compacts.

Survey responses were compiled through the help of the National Federation of Independent Businesses and the Texas Association of Business which forwarded the survey to their Texas members. Texas Business Attitudes Toward Federal Health Care Reform can be found at www.window.state.tx.us/specialrpt/healthcare/2012.

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