Gov. must wait for legislators to act on health exchange, lawmaker saysby Elizabeth Stawicki, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A key GOP Minnesota lawmaker says the state needs legislative authority to establish a health insurance exchange, a central part of the federal health care overhaul. But an official of the Dayton Administration says the governor won't offer a bill this Legislative session.
The governor needs lawmakers to approve an exchange, said Sen. David Hann. He spoke at a meeting Tuesday of the Health and Human Services Committee, which he chairs. He said the governor shouldn't move forward on an exchange unless the legislature passes a bill authorizing one.
"If we fail to do that, that does not then result in the default position of the governor writing the law," Hann said. "That there's no provision under our constitution to do it and I can't believe, and don't accept the view that the federal government can set aside the requirements with the respect of the Minnesota constitution to lawmaking."
Commerce Commissioner Michael Rothman told the committee the Dayton administration wants to work with lawmakers to create a Minnesota exchange. He hopes lawmakers will follow the recommendations of an administration advisory committee.
"These are consensus recommendations that the legislation that folks are talking about and drafting up should consider all of these things," Rothman said,
The exchange will allow consumers and small businesses to shop comparatively for health insurance policies in a way similar to using travel websites to compare and buy airline tickets.