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SMALL-BUSINESS GROUP TO TESTIFY ON HEALTH CARE REFORM BILL

 SMALL-BUSINESS GROUP TO TESTIFY ON HEALTH CARE REFORM BILL
 Cleveland's Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE), will be the first as legislators work to reconcile the House and Senate versions of HB478, the health care reform package developed in each chamber.
 John Polk, executive director of COSE, will address a newly formed, six-member conference committee chaired by Wayne M. Jones (D-Cuyahoga Falls), who authored the House bill. Polk's testimony is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. on Aug. 5, in a House Hearing Room 1D of the Statehouse Building.
 Polk will discuss an amendment -- informally known as the "COSE amendment" -- which was added to the Senate version of the bill. Polk and COSE helped develop the amendment, which sets legal guidelines and authorities for the creation of group-purchasing alliances such as COSE. Alliances allow small-businesses to ban together to negotiate and buy health insurance as a single entity.
 "With this amendment, Ohio has a unique opportunity not only to establish an important health care reform mechanism for tens of thousands of Ohio businesses, employees, and their families, but also to create a model of reform that other states can follow," Polk said.
 COSE and the group-purchasing concept have gained national recognition (from both the Bush Administration and Democratic leaders, for example) as market-based initiatives that help control costs and improve access to health care coverage for small businesses and their employees and dependents.
 COSE, a division of The Greater Cleveland Growth Association (Cleveland's chamber of commerce), is the largest local small-business organization in the country.
 The committee session on Aug. 5 is open to interested media. In addition, Polk will be available for background or interviews during the late afternoon today, and following his testimony on Aug. 5 at approximately noon.
 CONTACT: Jeff Linton or Kevin Donahue of Dix & Eaton, 216-241-0405, for the Council of Smaller Enterprises.
 -0- 8/4/92


BM -- CL012 -- 6658 08/04/92 12:30 EDT
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Date:Aug 4, 1992
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