The Editorial Board: Legislature tallied big accomplishments, wisely leaving some business unfinished The Buffalo News…
Beginning this month, hundreds of New Yorkers are eligible for expanded health insurance benefits due to provisions written into the American Rescue Plan (ARP), which passed in March. Now, uninsured New Yorkers whose incomes priced them out of the state’s marketplace because they did not qualify for subsidies will find some relief. The law increases the amount of financial assistance for people at lower incomes who were already eligible under the Affordable Care Act, and the law extends financial assistance to those whose incomes are above 400 percent of the federal poverty level. In a high-cost state like New York, this change makes a big difference in affordability.
Ninety-five percent of New York’s population is already insured. The ARP’s expansions will work to close the remaining gap. A Kaiser Family Foundation analysis found that the number of people eligible for a marketplace subsidy increased 20 percent and the average savings under the ARP-enhanced subsidies is about $70 per month. The law is retroactive to January 1, 2021.