As DC Appleseed’s 20th year comes to a close, I wanted to share with you some terrific news that we just learned regarding one of our longest running projects: ensuring that CareFirst meets its charitable obligations to the region as required by its charter from Congress.
This afternoon, the D.C. Insurance Commissioner issued a decision concluding that CareFirst’s $964 million surplus at the end of 2011 was excessive by approximately $268 million. This means that the company must now submit a plan to spend down this excess surplus in ways that will benefit the District and the region.
This is a great victory for DC Appleseed and residents of the national capital area. We’re grateful for the work of our pro bono partners Covington & Burling, Harkins Cunningham, and Mathematica Policy Research, and our expert consultant at United Health Actuarial Services.
We’re also grateful for your financial support for this work. We have big plans for the coming year on our CareFirst project and others, but we need your help to make them happen. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation in the next two days to support our work in 2015.
Here are some of our top goals for 2015.
Carrying out Our CareFirst Win — Now that the Commissioner has found CareFirst’s surplus excessive, CareFirst must submit a plan for dedicating that excess surplus to community health reinvestment. We’ll work to make sure that the company uses this excess to reduce regional health insurance premiums and support other community healthcare needs.
Public Financing of Elections — We are advocating for the public financing of elections to allow District officials to become more responsive to the public interest and to help restore public trust in government. We will work with the D.C. Council to get legislation passed on this issue.
More Affordable Housing — The District launched a citywide task force in 2012 to ensure that residents of all incomes have access to affordable housing. A number of the task force’s key recommendations have not yet been fully implemented. In 2015, we will serve as a “watchdog” to ensure that the District addresses the key policy recommendations in that report.
Cleaning up the Anacostia River — We have just partnered with the Federal City Council, one of D.C.’s leading civic and business organizations, to help transform the Anacostia River from one of the nation’s most polluted into a national model for urban river revitalization. With your help, we will address the ongoing stormwater pollution, sewer overflows, and toxic contamination that pollute the Anacostia River. We will also work to make sure that the land along the river is developed in ways that bring benefits both to the region and to surrounding neighborhoods.
Improving Healthcare for Aging Residents — Many elderly, low-income residents do not have a strong relationship with a doctor to help them navigate the various health challenges they will face as they age. Your support of DC Appleseed will help us pass legislation next year in the D.C. Council that will help these residents take better control of their healthcare options as they age.
Thank you for supporting DC Appleseed over the last 20 years. Your tax-deductible donation will help make our next 20 years even better!