Brown Plans Special Session To Deal with Federal Health Care Overhaul
From The Sacramento Bee, Aug. 18, 2012
Gov. Jerry Brown plans to call a special legislative session at the end of the year on the national health care overhaul, as the state prepares to implement the landmark act by 2014.
The session, to begin in December or January, will run concurrently with the regular legislative session, California Health and Human Services Secretary Diana Dooley said Friday afternoon.
She said the state – one of the first to embrace President Barack Obama's signature health care law – is waiting for guidelines from the federal government, delaying the state's ability to act on legislation now.
Dooley said she suggested a special session to afford the administration time to implement the act once those guidelines from the federal government are received. Any laws passed by the Legislature during the session would take effect in 90 days, instead of the following January.
The Affordable Care Act calls for a dramatic expansion of the state's Medi-Cal program, California's version of Medicaid. The state is also working to set up a public health insurance exchange.