health insurance exchange en Last day to enroll for health-care coverage under the Affordable Care Act <p>Today is the day.</p><p>If&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">you don’t sign up for health-care coverage by midnight tonight, you might not be able to get coverage until next year. And if you choose not to get covered, you might get dinged on your 2014 taxes –also known as the "individual shared responsibility payment."</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">If you can afford health coverage, but you decide to do without, here's how much you might have to pay:</span></p><ul><li><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In 2014, it's 1% of your yearly income or $95 per person, whichever is higher.</span></li><li><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In 2015, it’s 2% of your yearly income or $325 per person, whichever is higher.</span></li><li><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In 2016 and later years, it’s 2.5% of your yearly income or $695 per person, whichever is higher.&nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="line-height: 1.5;">After 2016, the fee is adjusted for inflation.</span></li></ul><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">To avoid any potential fees, you need to sign up by tonight.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">There are exceptions.</span></p><p> Mon, 31 Mar 2014 21:01:21 +0000 Mark Brush 17049 at Last day to enroll for health-care coverage under the Affordable Care Act Michiganders are signing up for Obamacare at a faster pace, but the deadline looms <p>The Obama Administration says Michiganders are <a href="">signing up for health insurance</a> under the Affordable Care Act at a faster pace than expected. But time is running out.</p><p></p><p>Michiganders have until the end of March to sign up for health insurance or face a federal tax penalty.</p><p></p><p>The Obama administration says through the end of January, about 112,000 Michiganders have picked insurance plans using the federal health care website.</p><p></p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 11:20:00 +0000 Steve Carmody & The Associated Press 16423 at Michiganders are signing up for Obamacare at a faster pace, but the deadline looms Michigan insurer doubtful of net jump in plans sold <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The uninsured and others have time to sign up for private insurance under the federal health care law without facing a tax penalty.<br /><br />But one Michigan insurance executive doubts much new enrollment will occur before the March 31 deadline and cautions that the net number of people buying their own insurance in Michigan could stay flat this year.<br /> Sun, 19 Jan 2014 16:39:00 +0000 The Associated Press 16083 at Michigan insurer doubtful of net jump in plans sold How many Michiganders have enrolled for insurance under the Affordable Care Act? <p>It's been a little over two weeks since the Affordable Care Act officially kicked in.</p><p>How many people have been able to enroll? How many are getting financial assistance to help pay for their plan? And what deadlines do we need to be aware of?</p><p>Joining us once more is Don Hazaert, director of Michigan Consumers for Healthcare, one of Michigan's four navigator agencies for the ACA.</p><p><em>Listen to full interview above.&nbsp;</em></p><p> Wed, 15 Jan 2014 21:13:13 +0000 Stateside Staff 16039 at How many Michiganders have enrolled for insurance under the Affordable Care Act? More Michiganders signing up for Obamacare, but the numbers are still low <p>More Michiganders are signing up for health insurance through the federal Affordable Care Act.</p><p></p><p>Problems with the federal website made it difficult for people to sign up initially.</p><p></p><p>In Michigan, fewer than 1400 people signed up in October. But after a website overhaul, more than five thousand Michiganders completed the process in November.</p><p></p> Wed, 11 Dec 2013 22:04:17 +0000 Steve Carmody 15650 at More Michiganders signing up for Obamacare, but the numbers are still low In this morning's headlines: $306 for health care, Gov. ads, in-state tuition for undocumented <p><strong>Michigan will pay less than average for health insurance</strong></p><p>"The Obama administration says Michigan residents required to shop for health insurance starting next week will pay an average $306 a month - before tax credits - for a mid-range benchmark plan. That's below the national average of $328 and ranks 29th-lowest out of 47 states for which data was available," the Associated Press reports.</p><p><strong>Wayne State University to offer in-state tutition for undocumented students</strong></p><p>"Wayne State University will begin offering in-state tuition to undocumented students. The decision came as part of a policy change that ties tuition to students' high school diplomas, instead of their residency status," Michigan Radio <a href="">reports. </a></p><p><strong>Snyder not running yet, but his campaign ads are</strong></p><p>"The first campaign ad in the race for Michigan governor will start airing today. Governor Rick Snyder is launching his ad campaign before he’s formally announced he’s a candidate," Rick Pluta <a href="">reports.</a></p><p> Wed, 25 Sep 2013 11:44:46 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 14576 at In this morning's headlines: $306 for health care, Gov. ads, in-state tuition for undocumented Getting ready to help Michiganders make health insurance decisions <p>The effort to train people to help Michiganders navigate the new federal health insurance law is gearing up.</p><p></p><p>Starting October 1<sup>st</sup>, Michiganders will be able to use an online marketplace to choose a health care plan under the Affordable Care Act. How many plans there will be and what the plans will offer is still unclear.</p><p></p><p>But several groups are preparing to help with the process.</p><p></p><p>Don Hazaert is the executive director of Michigan Consumers for Healthcare. The group received a grant to help implement Obamacare in Michigan.</p><p></p> Fri, 13 Sep 2013 01:02:58 +0000 Steve Carmody 14404 at Getting ready to help Michiganders make health insurance decisions "Navigators" picked to guide Michiganders through health plans tied to the Affordable Care Act <p>Four groups have been tapped by the federal government to help low income Michiganders navigate their way through the new federally mandated health insurance market.</p><p></p><p>The new health insurance marketplace is set to open on October 1st. About a million Michiganders without insurance will have to pick among a dozen or so health plans.</p><p></p><p>To help them, the federal government has picked four groups to serve as “navigators”.</p><p></p> Thu, 15 Aug 2013 18:56:30 +0000 Steve Carmody 14009 at "Navigators" picked to guide Michiganders through health plans tied to the Affordable Care Act Michigan nurses lobby for Medicaid expansion <p>Michigan's largest nurses union is in Lansing today lobbying for Medicaid expansion.</p><p></p><p>The issue has been locked in a political debate at the state capitol for months.</p><p></p><p>John Karebian is the executive director of the Michigan Nurses Association. &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;He says Medicaid expansion is being “held hostage” by Republicans still angry over the passage of the Affordable Care Act.</p><p></p> Tue, 11 Jun 2013 15:54:22 +0000 Steve Carmody 12990 at Michigan nurses lobby for Medicaid expansion Insurance companies apply to provide Affordable Care Act coverage to Michiganders <p style="margin-bottom: 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 15.555556297302246px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; line-height: 21.99652862548828px;"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0); font-family: Georgia, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif; font-size: 14.44444465637207px; line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>More than a dozen insurance companies want to be part of a health care exchange that provides coverage to Michiganders under the new federal health care law.</p> Thu, 06 Jun 2013 21:40:31 +0000 Steve Carmody 12934 at Insurance companies apply to provide Affordable Care Act coverage to Michiganders The week in review: Medicaid, health care exchange, right to work, more Detroit corruption <p></p><p>This “week in review” Rina Miller and Jack Lessenberry discuss a state house subcommittee’s <a href="">rejection to expand Medicaid</a>, how Michigan will be run under a<a href=""> federal health exchange</a>, how universities are going <a href="">under scrutiny</a> for negotiating new, long term contracts before Michigan’s right to work law goes into effect, and how a city pension attorney in Detroit and a former trustee were indicted for bribery.</p><p> Sat, 23 Mar 2013 13:00:00 +0000 Jack Lessenberry & Rina Miller 11821 at The week in review: Medicaid, health care exchange, right to work, more Detroit corruption In this morning's news: Federal health exchange, rejecting contraception, and investigating EMs <p><strong>Michigan will have a federal health exchange</strong> <strong>to shop for coverage</strong></p><p>"Michigan will be part of the federal government’s health insurance exchange, instead of being a partner in a joint effort. That’s because the state Senate began its spring break Thursday without meeting a deadline to vote on accepting federal funds for the project," Rick Pluta reports.</p><p><strong>Health care providers could refuse to provide contraception for moral reasons</strong></p><p>"Health care professionals and insurance companies could refuse to provide contraception, or other services if they find them morally objectionable under a bill adopted by a legislative committee. The measure makes exception for emergencies," Rick Pluta <a href="">reports.</a></p><p><strong>Detroit reps want feds to investigate EMs</strong></p><p>"Two congressmen who represent Detroit are asking the federal government to investigate Michigan's emergency managers. Democratic Congressmen John Conyers and Gary Peters are asking the federal Government Accountability Office . . . to make sure any federal dollars under emergency manager control aren’t being wasted or misused. In a letter written to the accountability office, the congressmen say they’re concerned about the impact emergency managers could have on federally-funded programs and grants," Lindsey Smith reports.</p><p> Fri, 22 Mar 2013 11:48:05 +0000 Emily Fox 11817 at In this morning's news: Federal health exchange, rejecting contraception, and investigating EMs Commentary: Political insanity <p></p><p>You probably know the old story about the man who kept hitting himself in the head with a hammer. When asked why, he grinned happily and said, “because it feels so good when I stop.”</p><p>Well, the Michigan Legislature reminds me of that, with two big differences. We have begun to regard their nutty behavior as normal, and unlike the guy with the hammer, they show no signs of stopping.</p><p>Politically, Michigan is a moderate to liberal state. The state hasn’t voted Republican for president in 25 years. Republicans have lost every U.S. Senate election except one over the last 40 years.</p><p>We aren’t right-wing extremists. Except in the legislature, which is controlled by ideologues out of touch with the reality the rest of us live in. I’m not talking about conservatives. Good intelligent conservatives from Arthur Vandenberg to Gerald Ford have helped make this state great. I’m talking about people who substitute ideology for common sense.</p><p> Thu, 21 Mar 2013 12:33:34 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 11797 at Commentary: Political insanity In this morning's news: Detroit financial announcement, health care updates, and Michigan roads <p><strong>Governor Snyder to make an announcement on Detroit's financial emergency</strong></p><p>"Governor Rick Snyder is expected to announce today that he agrees with a review team’s determination that Detroit is in a financial crisis with no plan to solve it. That would set the stage for the governor to name an emergency manager to run the city later in March. There’s no official word on what the governor plans to do, but he has said the condition of Detroit’s finances is unacceptable," Rick Pluta reports.</p><p><strong>Health care exchange and Blue Cross Blue Shield bills move forward</strong></p><p>Michigan is moving forward on the Affordable Care Act. As the Detroit Free Press <a href="|topnews|text|Michigan%20news">reports,</a></p><blockquote><p>"In a 78-31 vote, 29 Republicans joined with 49 Democrats [Thursday] to accept $30.6 million in federal money to set up a Web-based health care exchange where Michigan residents can <a class="itxtnewhook itxthook" href="" id="itxthook0" rel="nofollow" style="font-weight: normal; font-size: 100%; font-style: normal; text-decoration: none; border: 0px none transparent; padding: 0px; background-color: transparent; background-image: none; display: inline;"><span class="itxtrst itxtrstspan itxtnowrap" id="itxthook0p"><span class="itxtrst itxtrstspan itxtnowrap itxtnewhookspan" id="itxthook0w" style="font-weight: normal; font-size: 100%; text-decoration: underline ! important; border-width: 0px 0px 1px; border-style: none none solid; border-color: transparent transparent rgb(0, 204, 0); padding: 0px 0px 1px ! important; color: rgb(0, 153, 0); background-color: transparent;">easily</span><img class="itxtrst itxtrstimg itxthookicon" id="itxthook0icon" src="" style="padding-top:0px!important;padding-right:0px!important;padding-bottom:0px!important;padding-left:4px!important;margin-top:0px!important;margin-right:0px!important;margin-bottom:0px!important;margin-left:0px!important;vertical-align:baseline!important"></span></a> go and investigate, and ultimately buy, the health insurance mandated under the act. The House also overwhelmingly passed a pair of bills that transforms Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan from a tax-exempt nonprofit into a nonprofit mutual insurer."</p></blockquote><p><strong>Lawmakers consider ballot proposal to raise sales tax to fund Michigan roads</strong></p><p>Lawmakers have come up with a new idea to fix Michigan's roads. As the Detroit News <a href="">reports, </a></p><blockquote><p>"Republican lawmakers could take the first step next week toward financing Gov. Rick Snyder's $1.2 billion road improvements by trying to place a 1-cent sales tax increase on the May ballot."</p></blockquote><p> Fri, 01 Mar 2013 12:31:19 +0000 Emily Fox 11482 at In this morning's news: Detroit financial announcement, health care updates, and Michigan roads State House panel votes to accept federal dollars to set up health care exchange <p>A bill to set up a healthcare exchange in Michigan has passed its first hurdle in the state Legislature. A House panel today voted to accept more than $30 million from Washington to set up the exchange.</p><p>It would be a partnership between the state and the federal government under the Affordable Care Act.</p><p>House Appropriations Chair Joe Haveman says the alternative would be a federal exchange with no state control.</p><p>“Although it may appear like it was a step in the wrong direction or endorsing Obamacare, this was the conservative vote. The other vote was the liberal vote to say ‘we want the federal government to take us over.’”</p><p>Governor Rick Snyder wanted an exchange run entirely by the state. But lawmakers did not act in time, and that’s now off the table.</p><p>The bill now goes to the floor of the state House. Wed, 27 Feb 2013 20:55:04 +0000 Jake Neher 11448 at State House panel votes to accept federal dollars to set up health care exchange In this morning's Michigan news headlines. . <p><strong>Blue Cross Blue Shield overhaul reintroduced without abortion language</strong></p><p>Lawmakers have reintroduced a proposed overhaul of Blue Cross Blue Shield, the Lansing State Journal <a href="">reports.</a></p><blockquote><p>"This time it is without the "objectionable language" on abortion that led Gov. Rick Snyder to veto the first package that cleared the Legislature last month. Two Senate bills would convert Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan into a nonprofit mutual insurance company."</p></blockquote><p><strong>Michigan might ignore federal gun control laws</strong></p><p>"Michigan may join a small group of states that say they plan to ignore some federal gun control laws. A bill before the state legislature would exempt any guns or ammunition made, sold and kept in Michigan from any new federal regulations," Steve Carmody <a href="">reports.</a></p><p><strong>Michigan gets $30 million grant to help shop for health coverage</strong></p><p>"The federal government is giving Michigan a $30 million&nbsp; grant to help set up its health care insurance exchange. The exchange is mandated under the Affordable Care Act. It'll help people research and buy health coverage," Rina Miller reports.</p><p> Fri, 18 Jan 2013 12:00:41 +0000 Emily Fox 10838 at In this morning's Michigan news headlines. . In this morning's Michigan news headlines. . . <p><strong>State-run health exchange rejected in House</strong></p><p>Action on a state-run exchange for people to shop for health coverage was rejected in the state House Thursday. As the Lansing State Journal <a href="">reports,</a></p><blockquote><p>"Gov. Rick Snyder prefers a state-run program, but his administration this month applied for a federal grant as a first step toward the fallback position of teaming with the federal department. States have the option of creating their own exchange, teaming up with the federal government or having a federal system. . . Some Democrats opposed the legislation because it was linked to bills that would prohibit qualified health plans offered through a state exchange from providing coverage for elective abortion but would allow people to buy optional supplemental coverage for elective abortion outside the exchange."</p></blockquote><p><strong>Bills move forward to make gray wolf a game species</strong></p><p>The Michigan Senate has approved a bill that would designate the gray wolf as a game species. The bill gives the Natural Resources Commission authority to decide whether to establish wolf hunting seasons. As the Detroit Free Press<a href="|topnews|text|Michigan%20news"> reports, </a></p><blockquote><p>"The wolves were removed from the endangered species list in January, but only the DNR is allowed to manage the wolf population, which has begun to encroach upon U.P. towns, according to residents. The animals also are having a big impact on the U.P.'s deer population, killing between 17,000 and 29,000 deer every year, according to a report from the DNR."</p></blockquote><p><strong>State threatens to sue Troy over special election </strong></p><p>"The state is threatening to sue the city of Troy over plans for a special election to replace recalled Mayor Janice Daniels. The Michigan Department of Elections says state law requires an election in February. Troy officials want to wait until next November. The state sent a letter to city leaders giving them until 1pm Friday to comply with the directive, and avoid litigation," Chris Zollars reports.</p><p> Fri, 30 Nov 2012 11:57:08 +0000 Emily Fox 10151 at In this morning's Michigan news headlines. . . State-run health care exchange dead <p></p><p>Each week we take a look at Michigan politics with Ken Sikkema, former senate majority leader and senior policy fellow at Public Sector Consultants, and Susan Demas, political analyst for Michigan Information and Research Service.</p><p>The House GOP Health Policy Committee, today voted by a 9-5 vote&nbsp; against legislation to establish a state-run health care exchange. The health care exchanges are a requirement of the federal Affordable Care Act.</p><p>Governor Rick Snyder has been pushing for a state-run online market where people can compare and buy health insurance plans, but Republicans in the House continue their opposition to Obama's federal health care act. Today, Speaker of the House Jase Bolger asked fellow Republicans to pass the legislation.</p><p>"Here you have a situation where the Speaker finally said lets do this, and his own members said, 'No, we don't want to do it.' So, I think that's somewhat of an embarrassing moment here for the Speaker, not so much for the Governor," said Sikkema.</p><p>Demas says there are no signs of an extension for states to set up the exchange. At this point it's likely the state will get a federally created exchange.</p><p> Thu, 29 Nov 2012 21:52:00 +0000 Jennifer White & Mercedes Mejia 10144 at State-run health care exchange dead State-run health insurance exchange likely defeated <p><em>updated 1:23 p.m.&nbsp; from Gongwer News Service:</em></p><blockquote><p><em>With the vote, House Speaker Jase Bolger (R-Marshall) issued a statement saying there will be no state-run exchange. Bolger spokesperson Ari Adler said it is "highly unlikely" the bill will be reconsidered.</em></p></blockquote><p>The Affordable Care Act requires that states set up online "health insurance exchanges" by 2014 so consumers can shop for their insurance plans.</p><p>The exchanges are supposed to work like an Expedia or Travelocity for health insurance.</p><p>If states don't set one up, they'll be required to use a federal exchange.</p><p>Republicans in the Michigan legislature have resisted setting up a state-run exchange, hoping the Supreme Court or a Republican President would knock down the Affordable Care Act.</p><p>Neither of those things happened, but&nbsp;the resistance continues, as Chris Gautz of <a href="">Crain's Detroit Business </a>reports today:</p><blockquote><p>The state House Health Policy Committee this morning voted down a bill that would have created a state-based health insurance exchange, with Republicans continuing their opposition.<br><br>Rep. Gail Haines, R-Lake Angelus and chairwoman of the committee, voted yes on SB 693 — to audible groans from those packed into the hearing room. But the measure failed on a 9-5 vote, with two abstentions.<br><br>A motion then was made to reconsider the vote, which Haines moved to pass for the day and then adjourned the meeting.</p></blockquote><p>Gautz reports "It is unclear whether the House committee will take up the bill again."</p><p></p><p> Thu, 29 Nov 2012 17:22:01 +0000 Mark Brush 10134 at State-run health insurance exchange likely defeated Post-election the Michigan Tea Party continues to try to flex its muscle <p>Before we get down to pure-politics this week, we want to first take a moment to remember former Michigan First Lady Helen Milliken, who just passed away. She was married to Michigan’s longest-serving governor, Bill Milliken, thus, making Ms. Milliken the state’s longest serving first lady. She was not a woman content to simply stand in the shadow of her husband’s accomplishments. She was part of that generation of first ladies, embodied also by Betty Ford, who made it clear that even though they were married to their husbands, they had their own opinions, their own causes, and their own accomplishments.</p><p>First Lady Milliken was an advocate for the arts, for environmental causes, feminism and abortion rights. She was an ardent enough activist in her own right that when Michigan environmentalists wanted to recognize environmental activism they named it the Helen and William Milliken Distinguished Service Award. She exerted some influence in making those Bill Milliken’s priorities, as well, even though at times it put both of them at odds with the more-conservative elements of the Republican Party.<br><br>And, interestingly enough, this brings us to the current Republican administration. There are some tensions between Snyder-Republicans and the right wing of the Republican Party, especially the Tea Party. The Tea Party continues to send the message that it is not planning on going away, that it’s going to continue to push Republicans in the most-conservative direction possible. And we’re really seeing this play out with two particular issues right now in Michigan: health insurance exchanges and right to work.</p><p><strong>The politics of the Exchanges</strong></p><p>The health insurance exchanges are the online marketplaces where people and small businesses will shop for health insurance under Obamacare. Like Orbitz or Travelocity, but for health insurance. Basically, Michigan has three options: a state-run exchange, a federally run exchange, or some type of hybrid. Governor Snyder and a lot of business groups wanted a state exchange. But, all year-long, state House Republicans kept saying, “No, not yet.”</p><p>First House Republicans wanted to wait for the U.S. Supreme Court decision on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. When that didn’t go the way they wanted, they said the state should wait for the November election and see who’s elected president, with the idea that if Governor Romney was elected, then Obamacare would be repealed and the health insurance exchanges would be a moot point. But, as we know, that didn’t go the way they wanted either. And, now, they’re still dragging their feet, saying they still have more questions. Fri, 16 Nov 2012 19:01:39 +0000 Zoe Clark & Rick Pluta 9960 at Post-election the Michigan Tea Party continues to try to flex its muscle