Rep. Carbajal Joins Colleagues to Propose ACA Reform Measures

Amid Senate Repeal Failure, Co-sponsors Legislation to Stabilize Cost Sharing Reduction Subsidies

Today, Congressman Salud Carbajal (CA-24) announced his co-sponsorship of the Marketplace Certainty Act H.R. 3258, legislation to permanently fund and expand access to Cost Sharing Reduction (CSR) subsidies. Senate Republicans’ latest ACA repeal effort was halted last night and reports indicate that they now plan to repeal this legislation without any replacement plan.

“Senate Republicans are faltering in their misguided attempt to work only within their own party to repeal the Affordable Care Act,” said Congressman Carbajal. “It is time for them to abandon their repeal, and work with Democrats in a bipartisan way to address the problems with the ACA and improve access and affordability in our healthcare system. I am proud to join with some of my colleagues to propose common-sense reform that would stabilize Cost Sharing Reduction subsidies and help lower insurance premium costs for hardworking Central Coast families.”

To date, the President and his Administration have refused to commit to funding CSRs, causing uncertainly in the insurance marketplace, despite the fact that these payments are required under the law. Continuing to fund CSR payments would save the government $2.3 billion in spending per year and help working and middle class families reduce premium costs.

In addition to supporting the Marketplace Certainty Act, Carbajal joined House New Democratic Coalition members to introduce their five-part plan to stabilize the individual health insurance marketplace and slow the growth of premiums and deductibles. Without enforcement or effective replacement of the Affordable Care Act, average premiums in 2018 and 2019 are projected to increase 15 percent to 20 percent higher than they would otherwise.

The plan, titled Solutions Over Politics, seeks to stabilize the individual market while protecting plans for people with pre-existing conditions, keeping costs down for lower income Americans, and promoting enrollment. The plan puts forth the following proposals:

  • Create a Permanent Reinsurance Program — ensures that patients can’t be denied coverage or charged more based on health or other status.
  • Reduce Copays and Deductibles for Low-Income Americans — provides funding for continued CSR payments to reduce insurance market instability.
  • Promote Coverage and Ensure People Pay their Fair Share — promote enrollment in exchange plans around open enrollment periods.
  • Create More Affordable Options — Allow option for some consumers to buy in to Medicare as they approach retirement age, provide additional targeted premium assistance, and ensure that health savings accounts (HSAs) are flexible and compatible with plans compliant with the ACA.
  • Make Additional Improvements to the Health Insurance Market — consider allowing ACA subsidy certification for multiple years, which would give insurers and consumers greater certainty.

Read the full Solutions Over Politics proposal here.