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California Approves Health Benefit Exchange Bill

Yesterday the Assembly Health Committee approved bill AB1602 that would create the California Health Benefit Exchange to allow individuals and small business to purchase private health insurance coverage. The new national health reform law stipulates that state exchanges must be established by January 1, 2014. AB 1602 will need to pay this year in order for it to take effect by the deadline according to Assembly Speaker John Perez (D-Los Angeles).

Assemblywoman Audra Strickland (R-Thousand Oaks) called Perez’s bill premature and described his claim that it will help recover as specious.  She stated “Frankly, I don’t believe there is any way that the expansion of a government-run health care program will create any private sector jobs”.

California is seriously in debt, with a deficit of over $20 billion, and now a new state government activity must be established. Who will pay for the new California state “employees” that are required to manage and administer the California Health Benefit Exchange?

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