Local Business Headlines
- St. Louis Freightway, Port of New Orleans sign pact aimed at fostering economic growth
- J.C. Penney says it will close up to 140 stores
- Alton resident presented Living Legends Award
- Economic development course series starts March 1
- World’s Largest Garage Sale makes return April 23
- CNB Bank & Trust announces new financial advisor
- SIUE implements reverse transfer credit program with LCCC
- Divine Immanence LLC, Maryville beauty supply business, opens
Insurance companies maneuvering to get ready for health insurance marketplaces
Health insurance companies are putting the squeeze on hospitals and other healthcare providers in preparation for the rollout of the health insurance marketplaces, scheduled for Oct. 1, according to Jeff Taylor, vice president of The Bovinette Agency in Belleville. The firm specializes in employee benefits and group health insurance.
“I think what a lot of these carriers are wanting to do is be able to get their pricing as low as possible when these exchanges open,” Taylor said. “It will be similar to when you search for an airline fare. You’re going to go on and you’ll see these different rates from these different companies with fairly similar plans. No one wants to be the high-cost provider, so the ball is swinging over to the side of the court that’s going to push them to really do their best to drive down costs.”
Another byproduct of the marketplace competition, according to Taylor, is that insurers are limiting the number of providers that are “in network.” That may mean, he says, that the insurers will continue to have a fairly broad network structure but offer deeper discounts with a handful of select providers. Blue Cross, he says, is doing that and Coventry in St. Louis has also designated a select network which excludes certain providers.
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Pending court order will signal green light for Chemetco project to begin reclaiming metals
Pending approval of an official court order by the U.S. District Court, an Illinois-based company will move full-steam ahead in refining and recycling metals contained in the slag piles surrounding the former Chemetco plant in Hartford, Ill.
Paradigm Minerals & Environmental Services - a privately held, secondary recycling company incorporated in Illinois in 2009 - has been working in close partnership with the US EPA over the past three years. Paradigm CEO Elliott Stegin’s affiliation with the site extends further back; his sister company, Industrial Asset Disposition, performed the massive demolition work in 2011, razing a lion’s share of the former plant buildings at the site.
Chemetco, once one of the largest U.S. copper refinery operations with reported annual revenues of $500 million in 1999, opened in 1970 but was shuttered in 2001. Its former owner and CEO, Denis L. Feron, and others, were found guilty of violating the Clean Water Act. A measurable layer of toxic pollution covered the bottom of Long Lake (a Mississippi River tributary) by the time a secret drainage pipe was discovered 10 years later. The pipe had been installed in 1986 by Chemetco to drain several types of toxic metal pollutants.
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