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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Georgia Mandate Bill Stalls

As part of its series on autism, Atlanta's WXIA covers parents lobbying the Georgia Legislature

In the video, State Senator Renee Unterman (   ) says that she does not believe that the premium impact of the legislation would be only 32 cents a month.  (See here for the data.)

The effort fell short, as the station also reports:
Two key lawmakers said Monday that the bill requiring insurance coverage for autism would likely get shelved this legislative session. And according to Autism Speaks, the bill may not be taken up again until 2015. 
Publicly, the autism insurance bill had the enthusiastic backing of supporters from around Georgia, who rallied at the Capitol Monday to lobby for its passage. But as they swarmed the Capitol, the measure was getting treatment likely to kill it for the year.
"There are powers that be that don't want to see it moving," said Rep. Ben Harbin (R-Evans), sponsor of the bill known as Ava's Law.

"As far as for this session, it won't happen," said Rep. Richard Smith (R-Columbus), chairman of the House insurance committee. Smith all but sealed the bill's fate fate by assigning the bill to a study committee.
Smith says his hands were tied by a law passed in 2011. It requires that any bill with a new insurance mandate go to a committee called a mandate committee.
Unterman is on the mandate committee.