One of the first bills filed for the 2017 regular legislative session seeks to undo penalties put in place by the Affordable Care Act. Covington Representative Paul Hollis says he filed the legislation on the first day bills could be submitted. He says the proposal would no longer require Louisiana residents to pay a fine for not having health insurance.

“To put on a mandate on people to buy a product, that’s unprecedented, and I think it’s caused a great deal of challenges, not to mention all the things Obamacare has done,” Hollis said.

Hollis says the bill comes in response to President Trump’s executive order that allows state departments to waive any provision of the Affordable Care Act “that would impose a fiscal burden on a state.” He says there’s a lot up in the air regarding Obamacare, but it’s clear it’s not what’s right for Louisiana.

“I think most people, like me, think it’s a job killing machine. The individual mandate, if I had to put a fine point on one of the things I like the lease, that’s probably one of them,” Hollis said.

Hollis expects a great deal of support from the legislature when they convene in April. He says this legislation keeps money in people’s pockets and government out of healthcare decisions. He expects more states will follow suit.

“I hope that Washington gives autonomy to the states, and from what I’ve seen so far in this limited amount of time, it bolsters that,” Hollis said.

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