RICHMOND, VA – Today, Governor Glenn Youngkin ceremonially signed HB 884, sponsored by Delegate Kathy Byron, R-Bedford, and SB 195, sponsored by Senator Montgomery “Monty” Mason, D-Williamsburg, which will permit the creation of benefits consortiums for small businesses in Virginia. Benefits consortiums allow small businesses to come together as a single large pool to offer their employees comprehensive and affordable group health care coverage. These bills will drastically improve the ability for Virginia’s small businesses to share risk, streamline administration, and reduce costs of coverage.

“This bill is a meaningful step forward to removing the barriers for our small businesses across the Commonwealth, by allowing them to come together and provide health care for their employees,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin. “On day one, I made a commitment to our small business community that when this bill reached my desk, I would sign it. Today, I am honored to stand with small businesses and legislators from both sides of the aisle to deliver on that promise. Virginians sent me here to go to work for them, and that is exactly what we are doing. These bills are an example of what we can accomplish when we come together for the communities we serve.”

“These bills will make affordable health care coverage available to more Virginians and help to control the costs of businesses offering that benefit,” said Delegate Kathy Byron. “Although the General Assembly approved similar measures over the last decade, the two previous administrations rejected these reforms. They are becoming law now because Governor Youngkin challenged lawmakers to put these bills on his desk – and we met that challenge.”

“Supporting small businesses and increasing access to affordable health care are some of the most important things we can be doing to grow our economy,” said Senator Monty Mason. “Small businesses will be able to use SB 195 to help attract and retain talented workforce, while providing workers and their families greater options for health care. Thank you to the Virginia Chamber of Commerce and all of the local chambers of commerce who helped advocate for this important legislation for many years. I look forward to when these plans are available for businesses to enroll in and Virginians can take advantage of this health care option.”

“Since 2018, the Virginia Chamber, in partnership with Virginia’s Farm Bureau, Virginia’s Realtor community, and more than 100 local and regional chambers across the Commonwealth have advocated relentlessly for this common-sense health care solution,” said Virginia Chamber President and CEO Barry DuVal. “I am thankful for Governor Glenn Youngkin and leaders in the General Assembly, including Delegate Kathy Byron, Senator Monty Mason, Senator Siobhan Dunnavant, Delegate Chris Head, Delegate Tony Wilt, and Deputy Majority Leader Israel O’Quinn, for taking action to expand access and lower the cost of health coverage for small employers. We look forward to working with our small business community to ensure employees have greater access to health care through this valuable health coverage option.”