Minn. Chamber urges Pawlenty to seek health grantby Tim Pugmire, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is urging Gov. Tim Pawlenty to back off his plan to try to keep federal health care dollars out of the state.
Earlier this week, Pawlenty issued an executive order to stop all state agencies from seeking grants and other funds available through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. In the order, he said the federal law "includes unprecedented intrusions into individual liberty."
Chamber President David Olson sent a letter to the Republican governor this week encouraging him to specifically apply for a $1 million federal planning grant to study a potential health insurance exchange.
"This grant does not require the state to create an exchange," Olson wrote. "Instead, it allows for an independent and comprehensive actuarial analysis of an exchange. The analysis will help us determine whether or not an exchange is a cost effective option for Minnesotans shopping for health care coverage."
Olson also stressed that an exchange could possibly have a significant impact on Minnesota businesses.
The Chamber of Commerce joins several health care groups that also urged Pawlenty to soften his stance on the federal health care money.