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Minutes: E. Russell Makes Us Aware of New Health Care (09/25/2013)

October 3, 2013

Invocation: Janet Napier
Flag Salute: David Vo
Raffle: Jackie Duran brought a gift basket and a $20 gift certificate; Graham Guess was the winner

Visiting Rotarians: Rachel Ponce, Lindsay Terrel, Melissa Castle – They come from the new Rotaract Club
Guests:  Greg Lowe and Ted Deck are guests of Fred, and  Linda May is the guest of Sandra O’Meara.

Announcements:

  • Welcome Rotaract. The new club has upcoming events including the Alzheimer’s walk. They are also planning a mixer on October 8. The club meetsevery other Tuesday evening. The club is looking for new members so please send people in their age group their way.
  • Fiddlers Festival. Andy Doerr asked members to sell tickets and sign up to volunteer.  There are also ad sheets on our tables for those who would like to be in the program. The planning committee has one last meeting. We received a donation check. We look forward to seeing everyone there!
  • Citrix support: Citrix has granted our club financial support for a dental clinic.
  • Fundraisers: Steve Kally talked about some past fundraisers from the Carpinteria club. It turns out they had some experiences that resulted in losses and challenging times.  In one fundraiser, they had 800 pounds of sausage for sale that resulted in 600 pounds of unsold sausage.
  • Next week assignments. Greeters: Lucille Ramirez and David Vo, Invocation: E. Russell.
  • Getting to know you with Steve Boehm. He shared that he grew up in Santa Barbara and what he liked best about his hometown was the sunshine and the ability to ride your bike.

Program: Covered California with E. Russell Smith

  • The federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has a component to establish a health benefit exchange.  In California, it is called Covered California.  California began to establish the exchange 2 years ago.
  • It is a new health insurance marketplace where individuals and small businesses can get coverage.
  • 26 states have chosen not to set up a health benefit exchange, thus the federal government is doing this in those states.
  • Covered California does not receive direct funding from the state. It receives all of its funding from the federal government.  The funds support Covered California through 2014.  From 2015, Covered California must be self sufficient.
  • People can shop online, by phone or in person to purchase health insurance coverage.  There are three markets: for individuals, small businesses and large businesses.
  • Covered California will be open for enrollment this fall (October 1) and services begin on January 1, 2014.  Open enrollment usually happens once per year. This year it will be October  2013 – March of 2014.  In subsequent years, open enrollment will be from October through December.
  • There are three different paths into California Coverage: Path 1 is at or our below 138% of the federal poverty level. (These individuals will be eligible for Medi-Cal.); Path 2 is for people between 139% and 400% of the federal poverty level. (These individuals receive some level of subsidy and benefits through Covered California based on their level of income); Path 3 is if you make more than 400% of the federal poverty.  (These individuals purchase health coverage through Covered California without any subsidy.)
  • There are four levels of benefits: platinum, gold, silver, bronze. The premiums and co-pays are different for each plan.  There are maximum out-of-pocket costs.
  • All of the plans in the exchange have to offer the same plans outside of the exchange.
  • 138% of the federal poverty rate is about $16,000. Individuals making less than $45,000 will qualify for a federal subsidy. Your subsidy will change based on your family income. The federal government is basing income on the 2012 tax returns.
  • Health Savings Accounts go away unless you are under 30 and you don’t qualify for other coverages.
  • If you do not pay for coverage, there is a penalty.  The penalty increases over the years.
  • 15 dictionaries will be donated to 3rd graders in honor of the speaker.
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