The Top 10 Business Stories of 2010

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, Dec. 27, 2010 12:00 am  

In Arkansas, about 500,000 people out of 2.8 million don't have health insurance.

But the legislation proved to be divisive. Republicans didn't support the legislation and made it a campaign issue in the 2010 election, saying they would repeal it, which is unlikely because of the Democratic majority in the Senate (not to mention the president's veto pen).

The first wave of expanded benefits started appearing in 2010.

Insurance companies could no longer deny coverage to children under 19. Also for group policies, dependents up to age 26 are now covered. And a lifetime cap for benefits has been eliminated.

Health insurance companies expected, because of the reforms, to see more revenue from premiums but not necessarily an increase in profits.

Some in the health insurance industry said they feared healthy people wouldn't buy insurance until they needed medical care.

Others in health care said that the days were numbered for single-doctor practices and independently owned small-town hospitals because of the new health care act.

Governors and attorneys generals have filed lawsuits in federal court challenging the reforms, claiming the federal government doesn't have the power to force people to buy health insurance. Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel, a Democrat, said his office wasn't going to sue the federal government over health care reform. He said he didn't think a lawsuit would be successful.

Some judges have upheld the reforms, but in December, a Virginia judge ruled the health care reform law unconstitutional.

The question will inevitably be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

3. Razorbacks Resurgence
The University of Arkansas Razorbacks hit the halfway point of the 2010 football season and appeared headed for the sort of year fans had experienced so many times before. It seemed that once again the big expectations of the offseason would go unfulfilled.

Losses to Alabama and Auburn put the Razorbacks 1-2 in the Southeastern Conference and 4-2 overall with six games left. All the preseason talk of making a BCS bowl seemed silly, and another New Year in Dallas or Memphis looked likely.



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