S.3554 - Affordable Coverage for Small Employers Act of 2008110th Congress (2007-2008)
Summary: S.3554 — 110th Congress (2007-2008)
Introduced in Senate (09/24/2008)
Affordable Coverage for Small Employers Act of 2008 - Establishes the National Health Coverage Policy Board as an independent agency to oversee a program to provide health insurance coverage to small employers and their employees.
Directs the Policy Board to: (1) determine a comprehensive, quality, and affordable standard benefit package similar to that provided under specified large federal employees health benefits (FEHB) plans; (2) apportion the United States into regions with no less than two states each; (3) establish a Regional Health Coverage Exchange for each region to serve as a central purchasing site for health coverage, to provide information about plans, to facilitate enrollment, and to ensure health plan compliance with requirements; and (4) establish the Regional Health Coverage Exchange Board.
Requires the Regional Board to develop common rating guidelines relating to the health insurance market for small employers. Directs each state to enact laws necessary to regulate its small group insurance market in accordance with such guidelines. Authorizes states to permit sole proprietors and individuals to purchase coverage through the Exchange.
Sets forth requirements for a health insurance issuer to offer health care coverage through an Exchange.
Amends the Internal Revenue Code to: (1) allow a refundable tax credit for taxpayer premiums for qualified health insurance purchased through an Exchange; (2) allow a refundable tax credit for small employer contributions toward the cost of such employee health insurance; and (3) provide for advance payment of such tax credits.