Calif. health board OKs plan for insurance exchange

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – The board overseeing California’s plan to set up an insurance marketplace for affordable health care has taken a key step by approving its operational plan.

Gov. Jerry Brown’s office is expected to forward the plan to the Obama administration on Friday. That’s the deadline for states to notify the federal government whether they will establish health care exchanges.

Federal officials extended the deadline to mid-December for states to submit a detailed operational plan like the one the California board approved Wednesday.

Peter Lee, the board’s executive director, said California is ready and does not need the additional time.

The action by the board of Covered California kicks off a sprint toward the Jan. 1, 2014, deadline for states to have health insurance exchanges operating under the federal Affordable Care Act.

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