New York State
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
STATEMENT FROM SUPERINTENDENT LEVIN:
FINAL PIECE IN PLACE FOR APPROVAL PROCESS OF EMPIRE BLUE CROSS
AND BLUE SHIELD CONVERSION
The Attorney Generals announcement of an agreement with Empire Blue Cross and Blue Shield, coupled with the Governors submission of a bill clearing the way for Empires conversion, puts the final pieces in place to move forward on the restructuring.
I urge the Legislature to act swiftly on the Governors proposed bill so that Empire can continue to protect customers and policyholders by ensuring that it is well positioned in the marketplace and sufficiently capitalized. The Department looks forward to reviewing the Attorney Generals agreement to ensure that it meets all regulatory standards set forth in the insurance law.
The Departments regulatory oversight of the transaction is an ongoing process in which our first priority is to protect consumers. As we move ahead in the restructuring process, we will work closely with Empire and the Attorney General, reviewing appointments to the foundation and other related boards. The Department will also retain extensive regulatory authority over Empire and any newly created for-profit entities.
After holding public hearings, and making significant amendments to Empires original plan, the Department approved the restructuring in December of 1999.