9 States Apply for Health Exchange Establishment Grants

Nine states asked for health exchange establishment grants during the latest round of applications, a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) official told Governing.
by | July 12, 2012

Nine states asked for health exchange establishment grants during the latest round of applications, a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) official told Governing.

The HHS official asked for anonymity because the department has not yet planned a formal announcement of the awarded grants. The official also declined to name which states applied, for the same reason. Governing has confirmed that California, Connecticut, Maryland and New York are among the nine applicants.

The applications were filed by June 28, the most recent deadline.

California is asking for nearly $200 million, according to a budget narrative posted on its exchange's website. The state has thus far received $39.4 million to set up its exchange.

New York requested a $95 million Level I establishment grant, which would be its second, according to a project narrative posted on its health-care reform website. The state has received nearly $60 million in exchange grants so far.

Maryland is one of the nine applicants, Marc Goldberg, press secretary for Maryland Lt. Gov Anthony Brown, confirmed to Governing, although he declined say to how much funding the state applied for. Maryland previously received a $27 million Level I grant.

An official familiar with Connecticut's exchange planning told Governing that the state had applied for multi-year Level II funding. Rhode Island and Washington are the only states thus far to receive Level II grants, reserved for states that are further along in establishing their exchanges.

Connecticut previously received a $6.7 million Level I grant. The official asked for anonymity because Connecticut has not yet formally announced its application.

Thus far, the confirmed states are all repeat applicants that continued developing an exchange despite uncertainty over the Affordable Care Act's constitutionality. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 12 states halted their exchange planning to wait for the U.S. Supreme Court to rule on the law.

The day after the Supreme Court largely upheld the ACA at the end of June, HHS announced 10 new grant opportunities to help states set up an exchange. The department has already awarded more than $850 million in establishment grants to 34 states and the District of Columbia.

States have until Nov. 1, 2012, to submit their exchange plans to HHS to show they will be ready to enroll people in a state-run exchange by Oct. 1, 2013. Otherwise, states will have either a state-federal partnership exchange or a fully federal-run exchange. HHS has indicated that states can also apply for establishment grants to fund state planning for partnership or federal exchanges.

Federal money is expected to pay for almost all state-level exchange planning and development through 2014.

A formal announcement of the latest round of grants is expected when the awards are finalized, according to the HHS official. Governing is tracking the health exchange grant process in the map below.

This story was updated at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. You can enter an anonymous Display Name or connect to a social profile.

More from Health & Human Services