The state Insurance Department held a hearing in June on two rate increase requests. State Senator Tony Hwang, whose district includes Newtown, says the hearing was not statutorily required, and the Department had to be pressured into holding one. A bill was approved in the House and Senate four years ago requiring increases of more than 10-percent to go to a public hearing. But Governor Malloy vetoed the bill.
Hwang plans to reintroduce the measure next session.
Hwang was also critical that the hearing wasn't held at the legislative office building. He wanted multiple hearings to be held around the state, and not in the middle of the day.
Anthem is requesting an average increase of 33.8 percent for policies marketed both on and off the state exchange. ConnectiCare has requested an average increase of 17.5 percent for policies sold exclusively on the exchange. Commissioner Katherine Wade says the two companies were chosen for the hearing because, collectively, their requests would affect the largest number of consumers. About 86,000 consumers could be impacted.