Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), HHS was authorized to provide grant funds to states to plan and establish on-line platforms–also known as health care marketplaces–where people without health care insurance could find information about health insurance options and also purchase health care insurance. The authority for HHS to award such grants expired at the end of 2014.
H.R. 1385 would appropriate $200 million to HHS to provide grants to states that, as of the date of enactment of the bill, were not operating a health care marketplace. The bill also would limit a grant to a period of two years and would prohibit HHS from awarding a grant after December 31, 2022. CBO estimates that enacting the bill would increase direct spending by $196 million over the 2019-2029 period.