Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Senator Monty Mason Sponsors Health-Care Bill Supporting Small Businesses And Their Employees

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RICHMOND – Two days after ceremoniously signing bills dealing with family leave and insurance, Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin continued with the health-care theme. On June 2, Youngkin put his signature on a bill that allows small businesses to group together in a health-care consortium to offer benefits to employees.

“This bill is a meaningful step forward to removing the barriers for our small businesses across the commonwealth by allowing them to come together and provide health care for their employees,” Youngkin said in a press release.

One of the sponsors of the bill was Senator Monty Mason, who serves the Virginia Peninsula’s 1st Senate District, which covers the City of Williamsburg and parts of Newport News, James City County, Hampton, York County, and Suffolk.

“Supporting small businesses and increasing access to affordable health care are some of the most important things we can be doing to grow our economy,” Mason said.

The bill, SB 195, has been in the works for a few years and will go into effect July 1. Baxter Carter, chief of staff for Mason, said details are being worked out, and businesses might not be able to access plans until later this year or early next year.

Small businesses are defined as those who have between 2 and 50 employees. Mason said it will help them retain and attract talented employees in addition to offering employees better health-care options.

“I look forward to when these plans are available for businesses to enroll in and Virginians can take advantage of this health-care option,” Mason said.

The Virginia Chamber of Commerce, as well as numerous local chambers, were instrumental in developing the bill and advocating for it.

“I think it will have a major impact on Peninsula businesses and small businesses,” Carter said.

One of the next steps, Carter said, is spreading the word. Mason’s office is working with the Peninsula Chamber, the Hampton Chamber, and the Williamsburg Chamber on outreach programs. In addition to targeting the public, there might be small conferences or seminars for businesses, Carter said.

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