December 18, 2014

Nixon says state will miss federal deadline to set up health exchange (AUDIO)

Governor Nixon says the federal government will operate a health exchange in Missouri, and there’s nothing he can do about it.

Missouri voters approved Proposition E this week, which prevents Governor Nixon’s administration from moving forward on a health exchange without involvement from the general assembly. He says there’s just one problem … the federal deadline is November 16th.

Nixon says a state exchange is preferred to a federally imposed one, but a lack of action by the legislature has made that impossible. He says the House of Representatives took up and passed a bill in 2011 but the Senate failed to approve the measure.

“The only option for Missouri at this time is to indicate that we will be unable to proceed with a state-based exchange absent a change in circumstances,” Nixon said.

A health insurance exchange would allow employers and individuals to shop for insurance policies and compare rates. The goal is to make the cost of health insurance premiums more affordable and accessible.

Nixon says he will be setting up meetings to look at the mandate in the coming days.

AUDIO: Jessica Machetta reports (1:15)