No B.A.U. for 2011

January 4, 2011 by  

Business As Usual will not be on the menu when the Arizona Legislature convenes on Jan. 10th. 

Judging from the November election, voters demand more – and the new majority is chomping at the bit to deliver.

  • a balanced budget
  • a healthy business environment 
  • higher academic standards, more choice and accountability
  • stronger families
  • fewer regulations
  • re-asserting our state’s rights
  • curbing illegal immigration
  • HOA and pension reform
  • and last but not least…. health care reforms that reduce costs & increase access to insurance.

My role as Senate Health Committee Chair will focus my attentions mainly on the last item – health care reforms.   They will likely include these, among others:  

  1. Medical liability reforms –  Last year we passed a higher  ‘expert witness’ standard for the courts to follow in AZ and two years ago raised the ‘burden of proof ‘ needed to sue emergency medical professionals.  Expect more proposals  this session to strategically improve Arizona’s medical practice environment.
  2. Insurance & Provider Transparency and Competition –  Americans know the more control government wields over their health care, the less the individual controls.   Empowering consumers is paramount to reducing costs through cross-state purchasing, easily comparable health data and other competitive measures.
  3. Strong families – when family & community members take responsibility for one another, health and social outcomes are better.   Arizona’s divorce and adoption laws should encourage intact families rather than erect barriers against them. 
  4. Getting more for our Mental Health Dollars – we either treat the Seriously Mentally Ill among us preventably in our communities or they populate the prison system – at a higher cost to the state and to the public’s safety.  The system we have in place is ripe for maximizing efficiencies with those dollars to keep more SMI persons out of the corrections system and on the road to recovery.

You can keep track of bills and issues through the Arizona State Legislature’s website.  Thank you for your involvement!

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