Rockford senators disagree on affordability of healthcare - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Rockford senators disagree on affordability of healthcare

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In the state of Illinois, a Rockford Republican lawmaker worries taxes resulting from healthcare reform will break the backs of middle class Americans.

With a few months to go before these changes start, both senators disagree about the impact of the numbers.

"One of those, that's a little more onerous, that has a direct impact on families and local municipalities is what's called a transitional fee or a tax that's being placed on every insured that's under a group health plan," said 35th District Sen. Dave Syverson.

Syverson lays the tax out like this. If you're insured through your place of work, you're taxed $5.25 a month for every person under that insurance.

For a single person, in a year that adds up to $63. A family of four would pay $252 a year.

Insurance provider UnitedHealthcare, backs those numbers up.  For fully insured UnitedHealthcare customers, there will be about a 4-percent increase on premiums.

Syverson says it'll be up to employers if and how they'll collect from you.

Democratic Senator Steve Stadelman claims it's too early to talk about definitive numbers.

"I don't think it's really known what the impact or repercussions will be of this tax because this is something that will have to be negotiated between governments and unions and we're not sure what the results of those negotiations will be."

But Syverson talks about taking action.

"We're urging Congress to rethink some of these taxes as part of this plan."

According to Stadelman, changes can be made once the reform is underway. He says the most important thing is that everyone is covered.

"As the affordable care act is implemented there will need to be adjustments in the weeks and months and years ahead but the bottom line is we should make sure everyone has access to affordable, quality health insurance and this is the first step to accomplishing that."

According to the Winnebago County Health Department about 40,000 people in the county don't have insurance. They can begin shopping for coverage next Tuesday-- October 1st. The Affordable Health Care Act itself does not go into effect until the first of the year.

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