Legislators hear public input on bills to support affordable healthcare

Many people spoke to eliminating the “family glitch.”
Updated: May. 12, 2021 at 4:23 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Maine (WABI) - Lawmakers took a look at several bills today that support affordable and universal health care.

One bill is aimed at making health care coverage easier to pay for working families and small businesses.

Several people testified in favor of this bill before the Health Coverage, Insurance, and Financial Services committee.

They also spoke to how it could help with the family glitch.

The family glitch is the Affordable Care Act rule that bases your family’s eligibility for premium subsidies on what’s affordable for the employee, not the entire family.

“By approving a state-based assessment Maine would join other states in recognizing that our current health insurance just doesn’t work for low-income and middle income families and small mom and pop businesses,” said Betsy Sweet, who was speaking on behalf of a physician.

“Simply put, if you do move forward with this health insurance tax on the fully insured market in Maine it will be reflected, newly reflected next year in premiums,” said Kimberly Cook with Community Health Option.

Those who spoke against the bill say this is a federal problem that should be taken care of at the federal level.

It would bring back the health insurance tax that some say would make it more difficult for small businesses to purchase health insurance for their employees.

Other bills discussed today would provide easy enrollment to the Maine Care program or a qualified health plan and provide universal health care

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