"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance

 and a people who mean to be their own governors

 must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Corzine Care Vs. Reality

Corzine Care seeks to provide health care insurance for the estimated 1.2 million New Jersey residents currently uninsured. Corzine’s aide Curtis Fisher has reiterated the Senator’s claim that the various schemes within Corzine Care will cost taxpayers a total of $15 million.

Neither Senator Corzine nor Mr. Fisher has been able to provide the specifics of the various proposals that would logically explain the unbelievable $15 million Corzine cost estimate. Waivers and State of New Jersey “bulk rates” referred to by Fisher don’t square with reality.

Take for example the costs taxpayers currently pay for people we already insure – state employees and employees in our local schools districts. As we struggle to reduce state expenses and property taxes, we wonder why Trenton hasn’t been able to purchase insurance at the fabulous state “bulk rates” Senator Corzine has used in his Corzine Care cost calculations.

Beyond the initial shock that New Jersey taxpayers insure so many employees that contribute nothing toward their health and prescription drug insurance, these rates don’t seem particularly discount, special or “bulk” to us. $3,095 a year for a drug plan for an employee and spouse seems beyond reason.

Using these state published insurance rates, the Corzine budget of $15 million would cover 2,750 mothers with one child for medical insurance only and 2,066, if prescription drug coverage is part of the Corzine Care plan. That still leaves 1,197,250 people uninsured. Perhaps Mr. Fisher or Corzine could tell us how much it would coast to insure the remaining million or so people.

Now in terms of ideas to reduce the state’s budget and our property taxes, we have a few suggestions:

1.) State and school district employees should contribute toward their health and prescription drug insurance costs at the same average rate as private sector employees in the state. The average state employee earns more than the average private sector employee, so please don’t write us about the lower pay for better benefits meme, it isn’t accurate.

2.) Contact Doug Forrester, he has figured out how employers can provide a quality prescription drug benefit, while at the same time managing and containing costs. As a matter of fact, Forrester’s Benecard company has been so successful at helping employers contain their prescription drug benefit costs, he’s become a multi-millionaire with his expertise . Too bad the State of New Jersey isn’t one of Forrester’s clients; he could have saved taxpayers a ton of money.


At 11:18 AM, Blogger Fausta said...

If you look at rates from private group health insurance providers, the rates would be lower, expecially for families with the oldest adult below the age of 45.

At 3:45 PM, Blogger DBK said...


Does Forrester have anything to offer or is it all "Corzine is wrong about everything and he'll make all your teenagers have abortions, the boys included"?


I have looked very hard to find what Forrester is in favor of or proposes or whatever and all I have found is a completely fake property tax plan that his own party members trashed thoroughly already and a bunch of attacks on Jon Corzine. That is really weak stuff.

At 4:42 PM, Blogger Enlighten said...

If people want to see state spending grow and property taxes to continue to rise out of control, then your right Corzine's the man for Governor.

Every single one of Corzine's plans will cost taxpayers more money. The state's going broke, the people that pay the bills are sick of being taxed to death and Corzine's plans are "strong"?

Frogsdong, what's your favorite Corzine plan?

At 9:03 PM, Anonymous Bob said...

The call for state and school district employees to contribute to the health care costs is fine by me as soon as I am paid equally to the private sector.

What continues to escape those who like to pile on state and school district employees is that the benefits are what we work for. We consciously accept fewer dollars in salary in return for the benefits we earn. That is trade-off.

While I applaud not squandering my tax dollars as much as the next person, balancing budgets on the backs of public employees is not going to fix the problems.

The funding mechanism of schools is flawed. Fix that before you target citizens' health benefits.

At 10:05 PM, Blogger DBK said...

Again, all you seem to have are slogans and talking points. Anyone can go to the Senator's web site and examine the entire set of his policies. He has explained at great length how he intends to grow the state's economy, eliminate waste and fraud (which he was stating as part of his campaign before Doug Forrester borrowed the expressions, not that there's anything wrong with the ideas since the Senator is correct), and cut the property taxes. He hasn't pointed out the huge errors in the Forrester "plan" to cut property taxes because the other Republican gubernatorial candidates already sliced and diced it. His own party doesn't buy his proposals, though I am sure they'll all join hands now, sing a chorus of "Kumbaya", and say what a swell plan it is. Of course, that means his opponents in the primaries were either knaves or fools, and are willing to admit it.

Getting back to the Senator's plans, there have been plenty of folks showing up at the Senator's web site who are from the conservative side of the discussion. They have argued against the Senator's proposals. Those people have been received courteously and answered in full. Nobody's afraid of the facts over there. It isn't all talking points and slogans. The discussions are substantive.

Now Republicans have been hollering "Tax and spend tax and spend" for literally decades. Funny how you like to speak for the other side's candidate. I don't presume to speak for your candidate. He doesn't seem to speak for himself. Like you, the whole campaign so far has been to attack and distort the other side.

Really, do you have anything to offer Republican voters except cheap shots and false statements about the other guy?

By the way, New Jersey's financial shortfalls and troubles started with Whitman when she lowered the state sales tax by 1%. When she left office, she left NJ $3 billion in debt. But I don't, as you perhaps would, paint this complicated state economy in black and white strokes and shout "tax and spend" or "drives up the deficit" in an electioneering, posturing attempt to make it seem all one side's fault or the other's. There is no one side that is at fault in the state's economic problems. However, what I have seen in the past few years of the Republican party on the national scene is that it will not work together with any other party to achieve some sort of concensus and solution to problems. They have been taking the "my way or the highway" approach, and the results have been very poor in general and awful for NJ. I want someone who can work with both sides, not someone who is looking to divide the state just as the nation is divided. And that means someone who doesn't paint things as black and white and point fingers.

At 12:13 PM, Blogger The One True Tami said...

I know I come late to the party, but I do want to ask, what health plan is cheaper than this one. I found data on a couple of private plans (google search) that wanted in the $400 area per month for a single person, and I personally contribute 1/4 of my benefit costs, which, when I add them up, come to more than $500 a month (single person). I don't think that my benefits are particularly luxe, either, it's an HMO. And if my very large corporation doesn't have "bulk rates", it would surprise the heck out of me.

If these prices seem high for the regular medical coverage, who has better?

At 10:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you look closely at GD Frogsdong you can see Corzine and Norcross working the strings that control the fingers used to type. GD, cut the puppet strings and go back to watching wrestling and cartoons.


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