Two companion bills introduced and we are almost 2/3 of the way to the blocking of PPACA or Obamacare in North Carolina.
SB4 was introduced and sponsored by Senators Tom Apodaca, Harry Brown, Bob Rucho, (Primary) Austin M. Allran, Chad Barefoot, Stan Bingham, Bill Cook, David L. Curtis, Warren Daniel, Jim Davis, Thom Goolsby, Kathy Harrington, Ralph Hise, Neal Hunt, Wesley Meredith, Ronald J. Rabin, Shirley B. Randleman, Norman W. Sanderson, Dan Soucek, Jerry W. Tillman, Tommy Tucker and Trudy Wade today January 30, 2013. And in the House HB16 was introduced and sponsored by Representatives Burr, Avila, Hollo, Collins, (Primary) Brody, Jones and Malone. Both bills are identical therefore; I will just point out the main points and just understand that it applies to both bills.
“AN ACT (1) to clarify the State’s intent not to operate a State‑Run or “Partnership” health Benefit Exchange, (2) to provide that FUTURE Medicaid eligibility determinations will be made by the State rather than the Federally facilitated Exchange, AND (3) to Reject the Affordable Care Act’s optional Medicaid expansion.”
These bills set off RED FLAG’S that need to be addressed further and will be explained later.
They go on to state in Section 1: “The General Assembly reserves the authority to define the State’s level of interaction, if any, with the federally facilitated Health Benefit Exchange that will operate in the State. No department, agency, or institution of this State shall enter into any contracts or commit any resources for the provision of any services related to the federally facilitated Health Benefit Exchange under a “Partnership” Exchange model, except as authorized by the General Assembly. No department, agency, or institution of this State shall take any actions not authorized by the General Assembly toward the formation of a State‑run Health Benefit Exchange.”
Further, they state, “shall cease all expenditures funded by the following Exchange‑related grants from the federal government” and they “shall notify the Secretary of United States Department of Health and Human Services that the State will no longer be drawing down Exchange‑related grant funds.” And the bills add that there will not be any expanding of Medicaid in the state, “No department, agency, or institution of this State shall attempt to expand the Medicaid eligibility standards”.
If it was just what I have reported so far I would say these bills were on the right track BUT there are as I stated earlier a couple of Red Flags that suggest that there will be no further bills to block the implementation of Obamacare in North Carolina.
First Red Flag, “It is not the intent of this section (Section 1) to prohibit State‑federal interaction that does not pursue a State‑run Exchange or “Partnership” Exchange model.”
The best I can determine this twisted use of English means that they have left North Carolina a way to work with the federal exchange to further Obamacare.
Second Red Flag — SECTION 2: “The Department of Health and Human Services shall ensure that the North Carolina Families Accessing Services through Technology (NC FAST) information technology system can provide Medicaid eligibility determinations for the federally facilitated Health Benefit Exchange that will operate in North Carolina and shall provide such determinations for the Exchange.”
Read that section as —The state working hand in hand with the feds will further expansion of Medicaid under the direction of the federal exchange.
For those who want no part of Obamacare booth these bills want to present the image of standing up to the feds by returning the health exchange funding and saying they would not expand Medicaid BUT behind the scenes they further Medicaid by facilitating information handling for the federal exchanges.
To understand what should have been presented to accomplish what they say they these bills do without the weasel clauses please see 4 Steps You Can Take to Stop Obamacare Now.
Contact the authors/sponsors of these two bills and ask them to remove these sections and either add to this bill or write a new bill that protects the rights of the citizens of this state by not forcing them buy health insurance.