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Tom Epstein

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NEWS
March 1, 1993 | PAUL HOUSTON
CAL CLOUT: Californians continue copping key Clinton posts. The latest is Tom Epstein, former deputy to state Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi. As special assistant to the President for political affairs, "my principal responsibility is to make sure that people in California have direct access to the Administration," he says. Attorney Epstein, 41, also will work on health care and environmental issues.
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BUSINESS
January 31, 2012 | By Marc Lifsher
A major health insurance company has settled an enforcement action with state regulators over payments for special therapy for autism patients. California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones on Tuesday announced that Blue Shield of California Life and Health Insurance Co. agreed to immediately cover the cost of applied behavior analysis therapy, which Jones described as a well-recognized and effective treatment. The settlement stems from a dispute that began last July when Jones filed an enforcement action against Blue Shield.
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OPINION
June 16, 2006
Re "Healthcare, state by state," editorial, June 14 The Times writes that despite state efforts to expand health coverage to the uninsured, a lasting solution will have to come from Washington. In addition to the need for federal funding cited in the editorial, state action is also hampered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, which bars most state regulation affecting employer-sponsored health insurance. Although states lack the resources and authority to match their resolve and inventiveness, a national healthcare system isn't necessarily the best solution.
BUSINESS
March 12, 2011 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
Higher insurance premiums sought by Blue Shield of California in recent months would drive total increases as high as 86.5% for thousands of individual policyholders, new documents show. The higher cumulative increases, once thought to be as much as 59%, were reported to Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones this week as part of Blue Shield's explanation of its plans to raise rates in May. Blue Shield already increased rates in October and January. If its third planned increase is allowed to take effect May 1, as expected, the San Francisco nonprofit said, 45,500 customers out of 193,800 will face cumulative hikes of 50% or more.
BUSINESS
July 19, 1992
Bradley Inman's story, "Industry Shoots Down Garamendi's Insurance Consumer Bill of Rights" (July 5), accurately portrayed the commissioner's pro-consumer legislation as being deflected by a one-two punch from insurance companies and agents. These same lobbyists have also stalled another consumer protection measure, SB 1854, by Sen. Nick Petris (D-Oakland). This bill would warn homeowners that so-called replacement coverage does not really pay the full cost of replacing their home, even if it includes "inflation protection."
BUSINESS
January 31, 2012 | By Marc Lifsher
A major health insurance company has settled an enforcement action with state regulators over payments for special therapy for autism patients. California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones on Tuesday announced that Blue Shield of California Life and Health Insurance Co. agreed to immediately cover the cost of applied behavior analysis therapy, which Jones described as a well-recognized and effective treatment. The settlement stems from a dispute that began last July when Jones filed an enforcement action against Blue Shield.
NEWS
August 13, 1993 | JAMES BORNEMEIER
It is one of the prevailing pieces of conventional wisdom that President Clinton had better pay attention to California if he wants a second term in office. The state is wheezing economically and is as sullen as a former champion on a losing streak. Yet with its massive bundle of 54 electoral votes and sheer political heft, it cannot be left to stew too long. If you're from Arkansas and now call the White House home, it's best to approach California cautiously.
BUSINESS
March 12, 2011 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
Higher insurance premiums sought by Blue Shield of California in recent months would drive total increases as high as 86.5% for thousands of individual policyholders, new documents show. The higher cumulative increases, once thought to be as much as 59%, were reported to Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones this week as part of Blue Shield's explanation of its plans to raise rates in May. Blue Shield already increased rates in October and January. If its third planned increase is allowed to take effect May 1, as expected, the San Francisco nonprofit said, 45,500 customers out of 193,800 will face cumulative hikes of 50% or more.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 16, 1988
Bush should be ashamed of himself for parading around the country trying to pass himself off as a friend of the environment. Where was George during the Reagan Administration's acid reign of terror on environmental protection? Where was George when the Clean Water Act was vetoed? Where was George when reckless offshore oil drilling was proposed? Where was George when James Watt was hired? Come on, George. If you're going to try to take credit for the perceived economic success of the Reagan Administration, you'll have to take the blame for its obvious failings as well.
BUSINESS
January 5, 2011 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
Another big California health insurer has stunned individual policyholders with huge rate increases ? this time it's Blue Shield of California seeking cumulative hikes of as much as 59% for tens of thousands of customers March 1. Blue Shield's action comes less than a year after Anthem Blue Cross tried and failed to raise rates as much as 39% for about 700,000 California customers. San Francisco-based Blue Shield said the increases were the result of fast-rising healthcare costs and other expenses resulting from new healthcare laws.
OPINION
June 16, 2006
Re "Healthcare, state by state," editorial, June 14 The Times writes that despite state efforts to expand health coverage to the uninsured, a lasting solution will have to come from Washington. In addition to the need for federal funding cited in the editorial, state action is also hampered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, which bars most state regulation affecting employer-sponsored health insurance. Although states lack the resources and authority to match their resolve and inventiveness, a national healthcare system isn't necessarily the best solution.
NEWS
August 13, 1993 | JAMES BORNEMEIER
It is one of the prevailing pieces of conventional wisdom that President Clinton had better pay attention to California if he wants a second term in office. The state is wheezing economically and is as sullen as a former champion on a losing streak. Yet with its massive bundle of 54 electoral votes and sheer political heft, it cannot be left to stew too long. If you're from Arkansas and now call the White House home, it's best to approach California cautiously.
NEWS
March 1, 1993 | PAUL HOUSTON
CAL CLOUT: Californians continue copping key Clinton posts. The latest is Tom Epstein, former deputy to state Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi. As special assistant to the President for political affairs, "my principal responsibility is to make sure that people in California have direct access to the Administration," he says. Attorney Epstein, 41, also will work on health care and environmental issues.
BUSINESS
July 19, 1992
Bradley Inman's story, "Industry Shoots Down Garamendi's Insurance Consumer Bill of Rights" (July 5), accurately portrayed the commissioner's pro-consumer legislation as being deflected by a one-two punch from insurance companies and agents. These same lobbyists have also stalled another consumer protection measure, SB 1854, by Sen. Nick Petris (D-Oakland). This bill would warn homeowners that so-called replacement coverage does not really pay the full cost of replacing their home, even if it includes "inflation protection."
BUSINESS
May 26, 2011 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
For the first time, California's largest nonprofit health insurer has released the salaries of its 10 highest-paid executives in response to a new state law intended to keep healthcare insurance costs under control. The top earner at Blue Shield of California was Chief Executive Bruce Bodaken, who made $4.6 million last year — more than four times the salary of his counterpart at the state's largest for-profit insurer, Anthem Blue Cross. San Francisco-based Blue Shield revealed Bodaken's salary in documents filed with the state's insurance commissioner, who had demanded the information under the law that allows regulators to examine executive salaries and other criteria to determine whether insurance rate increases are "unreasonable.
OPINION
December 31, 1989
The recent scandals involving (Mayor) Tom Bradley and (Sen.) Alan Cranston (D-Calif.) after four terms in office graphically demonstrate that even reform-minded elected officials become complacent if they stay around too long. With gerrymandering and special-interest fund-raising by office holders virtually eliminating the ability of challengers to contest entrenched incumbents, term limits may be the only practical way to open up the process. Your rejection (editorial, Dec. 18)
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