Ohio small business groups offered varying takes on the Affordable Care Act’s Small Business Health Options Program marketplace this week as it opened for early access in the state. 

While the Small Business Majority’s Ohio arm argued there’s “good business reasons” why employers should utilize the SHOP marketplace, the National Federation of Independent Business Ohio, which has opposed ACA provisions, said employers should “exercise caution” in considering the new option.

Created under the contentious federal health care law to help small employers offer affordable health insurance, the SHOP marketplace launched early access in five states Monday, including Ohio, New Jersey, Missouri, Illinois and Delaware, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services announced.

Early access to SHOP’s online enrollment aims to ensure HHS receives feedback on the system and addresses issues before it goes live in mid-November – a lesson learned from last year’s individual market rollout. 

SBM Ohio Outreach Manager Michaela Hahn Burriss, whose organization participated in an HHS preview of SHOP early access, said the online tool seems easy to use and functional, but noted it’s still in the early stages. 

Ms. Burriss added that Ohio’s early access to SHOP will give small businesses the advantage of being able to input information and research coverage options before the marketplace’s nationwide launch in November. She argued that it makes sense for employers to take advantage of the new option.


****Please note changes in meeting format, date and times****


8:30 - 11:30 am      Executive Committee Meeting
10:30 am               Registration opens in Griswold A/B
11:30 am -Noon     PERC Committee Meeting in Griswold C/D
Noon - 1:00 pm      Committee Meetings in Griswold C/D
1:00 - 1:30 pm        Lunch in Griswold C/D
1:30 - 3:30 pm        Business Meeting in Griswold A/B 

Registration fee is $50 per person and includes lunch. 

Click here to register 

 Please make hotel reservations through the Holiday Inn Worthington at 614.436.0700. The OPGA Room rate is $ 89.00 


Holiday Inn  Worthington
7007 North High St.
Worthington, OH 43085
Phone: 614-436-0700

The highest share of households that use propane as a primary winter heating fuel is in the Midwest. Propane use for space heating is also significant in the Northeast. EIA expects households heating primarily with propane to spend less this winter, but the projected decrease varies across regions. EIA expects that households heating with propane in the Midwest will spend an average of $767 (34%) less this winter than last winter, reflecting prices that are about 24% lower and consumption that is 13%. Households in the Northeast are expected to spend an average of $340 (13%) less this winter, with average prices that are about 5% lower and consumption that is 9% lower than last winter. Last year, a particularly large and wet corn crop in the fall increased demand for propane used in crop drying, reducing inventories in the Midwest. Severely cold temperatures followed the corn harvest and also contributed to high propane prices in the Midwest. As of September 26, propane inventories in the Midwest were 28.0 million barrels, slightly above the five-year average and 3.7 million barrels higher than at the same time last year.  

Despite higher inventories, the outlook for propane is uncertain. The amount of propane used to process the record corn crop expected this fall will depend on both the weather and commodity prices. Following the harvest, winter temperature outcomes will directly drive the amount of propane used for space heating. Changes in propane supply infrastructure since last winter are another source of uncertainty. The Cochin Pipeline, which previously delivered propane from Canada into the Midwest, was reversed in early 2014. While this reversal will limit the ability to deliver propane into the region, higher propane production from gas plants in the Midwest and new and expanded rail terminals should help to supply propane to the region this winter.

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