Lawmakers pass bill on Farm Bureau health plan

State News

April 8, 2019 - 9:36 AM

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republican lawmakers in Kansas pressed ahead Friday with allowing the state Farm Bureau to offer health coverage to members that doesn’t satisfy the Affordable Care Act, a state-level effort to circumvent an Obama-era law that President Donald Trump wants to replace.

The Kansas House approved an insurance bill on an 84-39 vote that includes provisions to exempt health coverage offered by the Farm Bureau from state insurance regulation, anticipating that the nonprofit group could offer lower-cost products to thousands of individuals and families. The Senate approved the bill Thursday on a 28-12 vote, so it goes next to Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly.

The bill had overwhelming support from GOP legislators and faced strong opposition from Democrats, but Kelly hasn’t taken a public position on it. The Kansas proposal is patterned after a Tennessee law in place for decades, and Iowa enacted a law last year.

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