Chamber's Legislative Agenda

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The Chamber's governmental affairs committee has their hands full this legislative session. The committee has four topics on its agenda.

Chamber member Mark Wilson says, "The main goal is to look at some creative solution to reducing health insurance premiums to businesses."

Jeff Hanson is the committee chairman and says, "When you have something as complicated as affordable health care or health care in general, you kind of have to take small bites at a time."

The committee's first step is to gather community leaders such as doctors, hospital staff, businesses, and government officials to all sit in one place and talk about health care and the options that are out there.

Hanson says, "We believe that one of the key ways of getting there is to simply get all the stake-holders at the table and start making decisions that create more of a wellness program."

The Chamber's committee and many of its members believe that focusing more on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, rather than treating ill employees will eventually pay off.

Hanson says, "It's the best of both worlds. You have healthy employees, you have healthy communities, and the end result has to be lower health care costs."

The committee says it will be a long road to get legislation passed, but it's one they're willing to take. The Georgia General Assembly will convene on January 9, 2006.