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News from State Senator Ted Kennedy, Jr.

June 15, 2016

Capitol address
Legislative Office Building
Room 3200
Hartford, CT 06106-1591

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Capitol: 860-240-0455
Toll-free: 1-800-842-1420
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Promoting Equality in Mental Health

mental healthLast week, the Governor signed into law a bill I introduced to broaden the scope of the working group on behavioral health utilization. The bill allows the working group to compare data on the number of approvals and denials of requests for behavioral health services and other health care services. It passed with a strong bipartisan backing, receiving unanimous support in the state Senate and passing by a vote of 122-23 in the House of Representatives. Senate Bill 131, now Public Act 16-158, takes effect immediately.

I have heard from countless families from across Connecticut that health plans are still refusing to pay for mental health treatments. Doctors and hospitals are frustrated and upset that they cannot get coverage for needed mental health and addiction services approved for their patients. By requiring better transparency on reimbursement data, which health plans already collect but do not always disclose, we will be able to determine if an unfair pattern of unreasonable denials actually exists across the industry. This information will enable the legislature to determine whether further action is needed to ensure that Connecticut citizens that stand to benefit from mental health coverage reforms are not shortchanged. Without good data, parity laws will be very hard to evaluate and enforce.

Honoring Our Veterans on Flag Day

flag day
This week, in honor of National Flag Day, I joined Representative Lonnie Reed to present a flag of the United States of America that has been flown over the state capitol to Branford VFW Post 12106. We were joined by the Post's commanding officers and held a small ceremony, after which the flag was taken to be placed on display at the VFW Post. Flag Day is held on June 14th each year, commemorating the adoption of the flag of the United States of America. This year marks the 239th anniversary of our flag being adopted.

New Ranking Places Connecticut #1 for Fortune 500 Companies Per Capita

According to Fortune Magazine's 2016 list of Fortune 500 companies, Connecticut's 18 Fortune 500 companies put it at the top of the list of states when measured on a per-capita basis.

We have five Fortune 500 companies in the state for every million residents--five times the national median of one Fortune 500 company for every million residents.

Connecticut's Fortune 500 companies are: United Technologies Corp. (Farmington); Aetna (Hartford); Cigna (Bloomfield); Xerox (Stamford); The Hartford (Hartford); Stanley Black & Decker (New Britain); Praxair (Danbury); Charter Communications (Stamford); Priceline Group (Norwalk); XPO Logistics (Greenwich); W.R. Berkley (Greenwich); Emcor (Norwalk); Terex (Westport); Harman International (Stamford); United Rentals (Stamford); Starwood Resorts & Hotels (Stamford); Frontier Communications (Norwalk); and Amphenol (Wallingford).

This concentration of businesses is good for Connecticut, and it ties in well with a bill that Democrats in the General Assembly passed this year to leverage innovation and entrepreneurship for jobs in the new economy. This new law uses our economic strengths--a highly educated and productive workforce, top-tier universities and existing businesses--to capture future job growth at startups and expansion-ready companies.

fortune 500


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Senator Ted Kennedy, Jr., Legislative Office Building, Room 3200, Hartford, Connecticut 06106
Capitol telephone: 860-240-0455, or Toll-free: 1-800-842-1420

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