House Aims to Stem Health Rate Hikes, Stabilize Market
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- Minnesota Republicans are preparing to plow more than $300 million into a new state program meant to reduce health insurance premiums next year.
Minnesota has grappled with some of the largest rate increases in the nation. Premiums jumped by as much as 67 percent for shoppers buying insurance on their own this year, leading lawmakers to use $312 million in budget reserves to buy down monthly rates for 2017.
The Minnesota House was set to vote Monday on a second chapter of tackling that instability. Their reinsurance program would help cover insurers' unexpected losses for 2018. Alaska created a similar program last year.
Some Democrats say it's far too much money. Gov. Mark Dayton has instead proposed creating a public option to buy into the low-income health care program, MinnesotaCare.