Christine Stuart photo
Rep. Steve Fontana, D-North Haven (Christine Stuart photo)

The House succeeded at overturning Republican Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s vetoes of two health care reforms bills Monday afternoon, but their fate in the Senate is still unknown.

The SustiNet bill passed the House by a vote of 102 to 40. Proponents of the bill like Rep. Steve Fontana, D-North Haven, said the bill creates a volunteer board of directors, four committees, and three task forces that will set up a “flexible framework” for an affordable state health care system.

“The cost of doing nothing is far greater than passing this bill,” Fontana said.

The goal of SustiNet is to expand coverage to 98 percent of the state’s population by 2014.

Opponents of the bill said while it doesn’t cost anything over the next two years, it will cost the state about $1 billion per year starting in 2012.

“I don’t think this path will do anything to decrease costs,” Rep. William Hamzy, R-Terryville, said.

The House also approved the Healthcare Partnership bill which would allow municipalities, small businesses, and nonprofits join the state employees health insurance pool. After less than 20-minutes of debate that bill passed the House by a vote of 105 to 37.

Click here to read Rell’s vetoes of these two health care bills. And here to read our previous report.