Kevin Brady (IRS photo)

House Republican leaders want to make sure exchange administrators in Nevada and Oregon send an exchange plan issuer user fee revenue they collect to HealthCare.gov managers.

Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, the House Ways and Means chairman, and other House Republican leaders made that point in a letter sent to Andy Slavitt, the acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the arm of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in charge of the HHS exchange program and the HHS HealthCare.gov exchange enrollment system.

Nevada and Oregon tried to set up state-based exchange programs, but they shifted to using HHS exchange systems after their own information technology systems failed.

HealthCare.gov charges its plan issuers a user fee equal to 3.5 percent of premium revenue to fund its operations.

The Republican lawmakers write in their letter that they have heard CMS is letting Nevada and Oregon keep any exchange user fee revenue they collect for a year, even though they aren’t running their own exchange systems.

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“It is deeply troubling that CMS would opt to reward states with failed exchanges that cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars in wasted establishment funding by allowing them to keep fees designed to fund [federally facilitated market] operations,” the lawmakers write.

Slavitt testified Tuesday at a House Energy & Committee subcommittee hearing that CMS is making efforts to control the purse strings and get money back from managers of failed exchanges.

 

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