Michigan proposal would end lawmakers' health insurance benefit

Legislators in the state get health insurance for life after spending six years in the Legislature

A proposal by House and Senate Democrats in Michigan would put an end to the state's policy of granting lifetime health insurance coverage to lawmakers who serve at least six years and are older than 55.

"It's simply ridiculous that politicians in Lansing still get free healthcare for life after working only six years," state representative Dian Slavens said to the Detroit Free Press.

According to the newspaper, state term limits restrict service to six years in the House and eight years in the Senate.

The Democratic lawmakers' proposal comes on the heels of a similar plan to regulate the state's auto insurance market more strictly. Due in large part to a provision within Michigan's insurance code that requires insurers to offer unlimited coverage for medical treatment resulting from a car accident, Michiganders pay some of the highest premiums in the nation.

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, premiums in Michigan are the 11th-highest in the country. Detroit residents' car insurance premiums are even more outsized, averaging more than $5,000.

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Posted: January 19, 2010

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