Wednesday, February 3, 2010

H.J.R 11 - Health Insurance Reform

Though I do not agree with the current direction of Health Care Reform, Representative Morley's bill to exempt Utah from Health Insurance Reform is a big time waster. During yesterday's Business and Labor Committee HJR 11 was passed 8 to 4; however the interesting part was the lack of information Mr. Morley presented. When asked how many people are uninsured, he was clueless. In the end he appeared to really know nothing about the Utah Health Care System and instead appeared to have an axe to grind against the federal government. He explained he would rather sacrifice his neighbor's health in exchange for Utah's sovereignty.

If you are going to bring a bill like this to the table; please know what you are talking about. This is a waste of time and not the way to fix health care in Utah or America. Lets try coming up with some ideas on how to improve health care. #lame.

For some more time wasters, read yesterday's Standard Examiner Editoral Page.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Affordablity of Student Tuition

During yesterday's Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee we were given a great analysis of the USTAR program and also how tuition compares around the state. Our own Rep. Wallis asked a great question of Dave Buhler from the State Board of Regents. Why is the cost so high at our community colleges in comparison with other western schools? He noticed, though most of our Universities are below the WICHI average, our community colleges are not in comparison. Mr. Buhler explained most states use property tax as well as state appropriations and tuition to lower costs. Since we do not allocate any property tax to community colleges, their costs are much higher.

Mr. Wallis stressed a need to have cheaper options here in Utah. The comment was made a number of times that Utah is above the norm when it comes to number of kids in school. Many families have more than two of their children attending college. This can cause a huge burden on families. Efforts need to be made to bring the cost down to allow more people to attend.

I liked where Rep. Wallis was going with this. Maybe it is time to re-look at how we fund these institutions. I am glad we are making efforts to avoid any cuts this year, but how are we going to be able to fund future growth of Higher Education. If not property tax, then something needs to be looked at to give schools more options of funding.

I smell some new legislation in the future for Mr. Wallis on this issue.