Lawmakers met during the week to continue discussions about the potential costs associated with the state’s forthcoming health benefits exchanges, while a recent survey suggests Illinois’ business climate comes up short for business executives.

A special joint Senate and House committee met September 21 in Chicago to continue hearings on the impact of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA). One purpose was to review a consultant’s report, released days earlier, which showed health insurance exchanges required by the new federal law could cost Illinois up to $89 million annually.

The exchanges are intended as high-tech clearinghouses to assist individuals and small businesses in buying health insurance, which is required as part of a controversial provision included in the ACA. Although health insurance exchanges will not begin operating until 2014, state plans must be submitted to the federal government by next fall." />

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