Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette delivering his address at his inauguration on the steps of the Capitol in Lansing, Michigan on January 1, 2011. We’ve written here on more than one occasion to dispel misinformation surrounding the legislation pending in Lansing to transition BCBSM to a nonprofit mutual insurance company. The legislation sustains BCBSM as a nonprofit, prohibits it from converting to a for-profit and requires it to pay state and local taxes. Earlier this week, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette weighed in with a Detroit News op-ed to allay fears that the state’s residents were at risk of losing Blue Cross’ charitable assets through the transition. Recent changes to the legislation assure that these assets are “locked and secure,” Schuette writes:
No other state has been able to secure an assurance from a Blue Cross company that the people of the state would remain owners of those assets once the company began paying taxes. What does this mean? Should Blue Cross decide to go public or merge with another company in the future, all the proceeds of that sale, potentially billions of dollars, would be paid over to the people of Michigan. The bills also provide that if a future transfer of assets or control of the company occurs, an independent valuation of the Blues' assets will be completed and the people will receive fair value.
It’s worth pointing out that we’ve gone on record as a company saying that we want to remain nonprofit. Read the rest of Schuette’s op-ed, or check out our previous posts addressing misinterpretations of the bills here and here. You can also view a full list of blog posts on the topic of our proposed transition. Photo credit: Wikipedia Commons