Lawmakers take a closer look at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan

A Senate panel is expected to discuss legislation aimed at overhauling Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan.

The Senate Insurance Committee's Thursday morning meeting plans include continuing talks that started Wednesday about proposals for ending the nonprofit health insurer's tax-exempt status and aligning it with competitors.

The bills introduced Wednesday are based on recommendations from Republican Gov. Rick Snyder. He wants to "level the playing field" for insurers and modernize the charitable trust that serves 4.4 million Michigan residents.

Blue Cross wouldn't be sold or lose its nonprofit status. It would become an organization owned by its policyholders.

The plan requires approval by the Legislature and Blue Cross' board of directors.

Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville says he has no timetable for the legislation he described as "very complicated."