Kansas is teaming up with Texas and Louisiana in a lawsuit against the federal government to oppose an Affordable Care Act health insurance provider fee.
In the lawsuit filed Thursday, Kansas is asking for a refund of $32.8 million.
The health insurance provider fee is collected from contractors who manage the state’s Medicaid program and Children’s Health Insurance Program, and states are required to reimburse such private companies for the fee. Kansas privatized Medicaid services in 2013 under Gov. Sam Brownback.
“This is just one more instance of an overreaching federal regulation designed to coerce states into funding or participating in Obamacare,” Brownback said in a statement.
Attorney General Derek Schmidt said the fee was a “de facto tax” on states.
“If the federal government wants to tax and spend, it may do so within the confines of the law,” Schmidt said. “But it may not, we think, employ accounting tricks that force the states to do the taxing while the federal government does the spending.”