Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Phil Scott today issued the following statement:
“As a bipartisan amendment to H. 509, sponsored by Reps. Greshin and Beck, that would allow the state to realize up to $26 million in education savings a year awaits discussion in the House, I want to assure Vermonters I remain committed to seeing this proposal is fully debated and eventually adopted.
“By taking advantage of a more affordable statewide health benefit for school employees, we can achieve tens of millions of dollars in savings without cutting school programs, increasing average out-of-pocket costs for teachers’ healthcare or compromising collective bargaining rights.
“I’m grateful to the Democrats, Republicans and Independents who are working to implement the statewide health benefit, which is necessary to ensure we maximize savings for taxpayers through this change in health plans – an opportunity we only have this year. These savings can be used to provide much-needed relief for taxpayers.
“This once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to save up to $26 million a year will help make Vermont more affordable, and I believe we have an obligation to Vermonters to reach an agreement on this before adjournment. In order to generate as much savings as possible, while not requiring school employees to pay more, we must make certain there is a statewide mechanism in place to ensure the savings are, in fact, secured for taxpayers.
"Anything that does not achieve these outcomes would not be an acceptable alternative.”
To learn more about the Governor’s proposal, visit http://governor.vermont.gov/.