In an effort to save the Commonwealth’s businesses an estimated $421 million, Governor Deval Patrick signed a bill $127.1 million spending bill for fiscal 2012 that included the Legislature’s effort to freeze the unemployment insurance rate increase.
Also included in the bill, Governor Patrick vetoed $700,000 for payment to cities and towns affected with Tropical Storm Irene last summer, noting that the administration already allocated funds for that effort. The bill also tweaks the state health insurance law that created limited and tiered networks to make sure children or cancer patients who are currently in an active course of treatment at specialty hospitals to continue to receive coverage even if their treatments or doctors fall outside their new insurance networks. The bill approved by the Legislature spoke more generally to patients with “chronic” conditions.
Patrick also proposed staying the implementation of those new insurance mandates for 45 days to allow the Division of Insurance to develop regulations for implementation.