State of New Jersey
Executive Order #92

Governor Christine Todd Whitman

This executive order repealed by EO #97 Whitman.

WHEREAS, the State of New Jersey has a compelling interest in ensuring that health insurance remain accessible and affordable for all its citizens; and

WHEREAS, it is in the public interest to ensure that an appropriate balance is struck between the mandated benefits that State law requires insurers to provide to its insureds and allowing insurers flexibility to structure their policies in a cost efficient manner to maximize resources available for the delivery of quality health care and minimize costs thereof; and

WHEREAS, the Legislature has introduced several bills, including Assembly Bill No. 1913, that mandate insurance coverage for specific medical procedures; and

WHEREAS, future piecemeal, uncoordinated legislative efforts to impose additional mandated benefits upon health insurers and health maintenance organizations will likely increase the cost of medical insurance policies for all citizens of the State of New Jersey; and

WHEREAS, there is a need for a comprehensive, coordinated review of all current and pending mandated benefit legislation before any new measures become law;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and by the Statutes of this State, do hereby ORDER and DIRECT:

1. There is hereby created The Task Force on Mandated Health Insurance Benefits. The Task Force shall consist of thirteen (13) members as follows:

a. The Commissioner of Health, the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance and the State Treasurer, or their designees, shall serve as ex-officio members of the Task Force.

b. The Governor shall appoint the following members of the Task Force: one (1) member representing the State's commercial health insurance industry; one (1) representative from a health maintenance organization; one (1) representative from the New Jersey Business and Industry Association or from the State Chamber of Commerce; one (1) member representing hospitals; and one (1) member representing physicians.

c. The Task Force shall include five additional members. One (1) of the members shall be appointed by the Governor. Two (2) of the members shall be appointed by the President of the Senate, no more than one (1) of whom shall be of the same political party. Two (2) of the members shall be appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly, no more than one (1) of whom shall be of the same political party.

2. The Governor shall designate a chairperson and vice-chairperson of the Task Force from among the foregoing members.

3. The Task Force shall:

a. Evaluate the impact on the quality of health care and the impact on the cost of health care from mandated health benefits currently required by State law and regulations;

b. Assess the anticipated health benefits and estimated costs resulting from pending legislative efforts to impose additional mandated benefits;

c. Identify and analyze cost-effective ways to minimize the impact of approved mandated benefits upon the health care system;

d. Develop recommended guidelines for determining whether additional benefits should be mandated in the future; and

e. Consult with the Health Wellness Promotion Advisory Board in the Department of Health and Senior Services, which is charged with reviewing medical testing and services that will encourage health care consumers to engage in healthy lifestyle behaviors.

4. The Task Force shall present its findings and recommendations to the Governor no later than one year from the date that the Task Force initially convenes.

5. The Task Force is authorized to call upon any department, office or agency of State government to provide such information, resources or other assistance deemed necessary to discharge its responsibilities under this Order. Each department, office, or division and agency of the State is hereby directed, to the extent not inconsistent with law and within budgetary constraints, to cooperate with the Task Force to furnish it with such information, personnel and assistance as is necessary to accomplish the purposes of this Order.

6. The Task Force shall hold at least two (2) public hearings as it discharges its responsibilities under this Order.

7. This Order shall take effect immediately.

GIVEN, under my hand and seal
this 12th day of March in the Year
of Our Lord, One Thousand Nine
Hundred and Ninety Nine, and of the
Independence of the United States,
the Two Hundred and Twenty Third.

/s/ Christine Todd Whitman



/s/ John J. Farmer, Jr.
Chief Counsel to the Governor