Virginia Agrees To Implement Key Provision In Health Care Law

Virginia’s Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli wants the Supreme Court to declare “Obamacare” unconstitutional. But in the meantime, the rest of the state’s government is moving right along to get the law implemented.

By a vote of 95-3, the Virginia General Assembly agreed to develop health insurance exchanges states, which each state will be required to have by 2014 under the Affordable Care Act.“[I]t is the intent of the General Assembly that the Commonwealth create and operate its own health benefits exchange or exchanges that meet the relevant requirements of the federal Affordable Care Act,” the resolution reads. “The Governor is requested to work with the General Assembly, relevant experts, and stakeholders generally to provide recommendations for consideration by the 2012 Session of the General Assembly regarding the structure and governance of the Virginia Exchange. The recommendations are due by October 1, 2011.”

Under the law, states can create the exchanges themselves or the federal government can do it for them.

Two Virginia federal court judges have issued rulings on the law — one has upheld it, the other has declared the insurance requirement — the individual mandate — unconstitutional. After a Florida judge this week ruled that the entire law be voided, some states have been toying with the idea of freezing the implementation process. Virginia was not a party to the Florida case.

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