WHEREAS, a healthy workforce and community are critical to the economic vitality of the Arlington community; and
WHEREAS, over one million Virginians under the age of 64 are uninsured, many of whom are in families with at least one full- or part-time worker who are not provided health insurance coverage through their employers, cannot afford coverage on their own or do not make enough to qualify for insurance offered through the health care exchanges; and
WHEREAS, these uninsured Virginians receive care, which is subsidized by employed Virginians through higher insurance premiums, providers charging more to the insured for their own care, and underwriting of uninsured care by providers; and
WHEREAS, this cost-shifting will continue to rise faster than inflation if the Commonwealth does not address ensuring that more Virginians have access to affordable health care coverage; and
WHEREAS, through 2022, Virginians will send $29.7 billion to Washington, D.C., through mandatory federal Affordable Care Act-related taxes, fees and provider payment cuts to pay for uninsured in other states; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth has a further responsibility to recoup these funds to help its own citizens, and the citizens of Arlington, by developing a financially sound plan that will ensure Virginia’s health care delivery system will have the resources needed to provide quality services to their community; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth has a further responsibility to see that the 250,000 uninsured Virginians, and up to 10,100 citizens of Arlington County currently caught by the Affordable Care Act in the gap between Medicaid and federal subsidies for health insurance exchanges are able to obtain health insurance and to ensure those currently receiving Medicaid benefits will continue to receive those benefits;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Arlington County Board, that it hereby supports and urges the Virginia General Assembly to develop and implement in the Commonwealth of Virginia a plan to provide more Virginians with access to affordable health care coverage and services, take advantage now of reclaiming federal funds paid by Virginians through the Affordable Care Act for this implementation, protect the health of our citizens, save jobs, boost the economy and help manage the cost of care for everyone.