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Tuesday, October 07, 2014
Ige Co-Sponsored Hawaii Health Exchange Failure
By News Release @ 6:07 PM :: 2434 Views :: Health Care

The Abercrombie-Ige Health Connector: Fiscal Disaster

News Release from Hawaii Republican Party, October 7, 2014

As the campaign continues, Senator David Ige has found himself trying to avoid blame for the disastrous Hawaii Health Connector that he helped create alongside Governor Abercrombie. Hawaii Taxpayers are certainly feeling regret after the Abercrombie-Ige Health Connector wasted hundreds of millions of their dollars to set up a broken system that will continue to drain their hard-earned money.

"Governor Abercrombie and Senator Ige's reckless fiscal management over the past four years has been fully on display, first with their tax hikes on Hawaii families and now with the Hawaii Health Connector debacle. Taxpayers in Hawaii simply cannot afford four more years of even more tax hikes and wasteful spending with the cost of living as high as it is." -- Hawaii Republican Party Communications Advisor Ted Kwong

BACKGROUND:

Senator Ige Co-Sponsored And Supported The Hawaii Health Connector Bill That Governor Abercrombie Signed Into Law. (SB1348 SD2 HD3 CD1, Introduced 1/26/11)

After Over $200 Million In Federal Grants, The Health Connector Still Needed $1.5 Million More From Hawaii Taxpayers. “The Hawaii Health Connector has been plagued with problems from its inception. Its open-enrollment period was delayed because of technical problems. Then it enrolled just 10,800 people and earned just $40,350 in its first six months, far below the $320,000 it expected. It was awarded more than $200 million in federal grants, but it couldn’t get by without a $1.5 million appropriation from the Legislature. Now, Connector officials are working on reducing expenses.” (Cathy Bussewitz, “HMSA Pulls Plans From Hawaii Health Connector,” Associated Press, 8/15/14)

Studies Show The Hawaii Exchange Is By Far The Nation's Most Expensive. "Hawaii’s Obamacare exchange, the Hawaii Health Connector, costs the nation’s taxpayers the most per enrollee, according to a new study by Kaiser Health. Hawaii’s exchange, which has just more than 8,500 people registered, has a tab of about $23,899 per person. Former U.S. Rep. Charles Djou, D-Hawaii [sic], noted Hawaii’s enrollment cost is 26 times the national average, 2 1/2 times the cost for the second most expensive state, North Dakota, and considerably more than the national average of $922 dollars per Obamacare enrollee." (Malia Zimmerman, "Hawaii’s Obamacare exchange most costly in nation," Watchdog.org, 5/15/14)

The Health Connector Is Falling Far Short Of Its Goals, And Will Likely Cost Hawaii Taxpayers Massively For Years To Come. "According to the study, just 8,500 Hawaii residents signed up for the Hawaii Health Connector, while 150,000 people are needed to make the program self-sustainable. Hawaii received $204 million from the federal government to set up the exchange and build and maintain its website. The Obamacare exchange will likely cost Hawaii taxpayers another $15 million a year, according to estimates from state lawmakers." (Malia Zimmerman, "Hawaii’s Obamacare exchange most costly in nation," Watchdog.org, 5/15/14)

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