Affordable Care Act debate featured on Capitol City Sunday - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Affordable Care Act debate featured on Capitol City Sunday


MADISON (WKOW) -- Kurt Bauer of Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce and Bobby Peterson of ABC For Health represent different interests in the health care debate, but they both seem relieved that the employer insurance mandate of the Affordable Care Act is delayed until 2015.

They are the featured guests on Capitol City Sunday this weekend.

"I think that this will be largely embraced and applauded by the business community," said Bauer.

"From a consumer perspective, there's a lot of moving parts.  So, taking away one of the moving parts that's causing some anxiety, I think its a good move," agreed Peterson, whose organization works to find health care coverage for the uninsured.

While low-income residents in Wisconsin will be exempt from buying health insurance until 2015, every other uninsured individual must have health insurance by January 1, 2014, which is something Bauer and Peterson don't agree on.

"This is why you're seeing a reluctance of a lot of insurers to get into the exchanges," said Bauer.  "And it makes sense, because the people who are probably going to be going into the exchanges initially are people who were uninsured prior, have pre-existing conditions and therefore are probably more costly to insure."

But Peterson says there is too much "sky is falling" type of rhetoric out there.

"Its a big change, but you know, we heard the same discussions when Medicare was passed and other big changes in the health care system.  But, what is the alternative?," asked Peterson.

In the second half of the show, Dr. Randy Cortright, the founder of Virent Inc. of Madison, is on to discuss the $4 million federal grant his company will receive to develop bio-fuel from non-food based sources, such as corn stover and pine.

"We've shown that we can do it in the lab, but we've got to take it a little bit further, take the costs down, so that then people will pick it up and then we can build the large plants and generate the volumes that you're gonna need," said Dr. Cortright.

Capitol City Sunday airs at 9:00 a.m. on WKOW 27.

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