Health exchange could cost state $54 million in 2015


The proposed health insurance exchange in Minnesota, part of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 or "Obamacare" as some call it, is expected to cost $54 million to operate by 2015.

A major component of the plan includes a website where users can compare health insurance rates. The Pioneer Press says it will allow consumers to buy insurance plans much like they buy airline tickets through websites like Travelocity or Orbitz.

Minnesota is receiving about $71 million in federal grants to fund the program through 2014. MPR reports the Dayton administration is also seeking an additional $39 million, bringing the total to $110 million from the feds.

The proposal has not established how the state will fund the new marketplace once it's supposed to be self-sustaining in 2015. Charging user fees, a "sin tax" on risky health behaviors like smoking or the sale of naming rights are being considered as sources of funding.

States have the choice to develop their own exchange plan or adopt a federally-run program as part of the heath care overhaul. According to CNN, 15 states have established state exchanges so far, with four planning to set up partnerships.

Fourteen states including Wisconsin opted not to create exchanges. Similar to other Republican governors, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker says the cost of a state-run exchange would be an extra burden on taxpayers.

Obama administration officials have not provided any information, including costs, in regard to plans for the federal exchange, the New York Times reports.

Next Up

Rennia Davis

Lynx select Rennia Davis in 2021 WNBA Draft

The Tennessee wing was selected ninth overall

Screen Shot 2021-04-15 at 7.08.23 PM

Appeal to find girl, 14, missing from Benson

Cienna Pittman went missing Tuesday.

Miguel Sano

Walk-off win for Twins snaps 5-game losing streak

Miguel Sano homered, but Max Kepler had the winning hit.


St. Paul mayor vetoes council's denial of $57M apartment complex

The project has raised affordable housing and gentrification concerns, but the mayor says all types of housing are needed in St. Paul.

Michael Pierce

Coller: Michael Pierce is a breath of fresh air for the Vikings

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

protest, Daunte Wright

In letter, Hennepin Sheriff asks Brooklyn Center: Do you still want our help?

Dave Hutchinson has asked Mayor Mike Elliott whether the city still needs help from other law enforcement agencies.

Image from iOS (1)

Fatal crash closes eastbound Hwy. 62 in Minneapolis

The closure is expected to be in place for an "extended period of time."

police tape, crime scene

Boy, 15, identified as 1 of 2 killed in shooting after crash in Minneapolis

The shooting happened after two vehicles crashed around 2 a.m. April 12.