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Hawaii health exchange money request denied

By Cathy Bussewitz

Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 12:08 p.m. HST, Mar 21, 2014

<br /><br />Craig T. kojima / ckojima@staradvertiser.com<br />Tom Matsuda, Hawaii Health Connector interim executive director, said there are now 50 call center workers to deal with an anticipated surge in enrollments this weekend.<br />

The head of Hawaii's troubled health connector says the federal government has denied a request that would have improved its financial situation.

Officials from Hawaii Health Connector had asked for more time to spend what remains of about $205 million in federal funds. Most of the money has to be spent by the end of 2014. But the federal government denied the request made by Hawaii and other states.

Interim Executive Director Tom Matsuda says it was not the news they wanted to hear, but it's where things currently stand.

The Hawaii Legislature has been considering giving money to the Connector if it can't come up with a plan to sustain itself. Matsuda has said he will present lawmakers with a sustainability plan in the next few weeks.

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AhiPoke wrote:
So the federal government had us build this health connector despite us not needing nor wanting it. The outcome has been a mess and the original director left/fled after being paid a fortune to waste $M's. Now the feds cut off funding (a good thing) and our state is thinking about wasting our tax dollars. This getting more ridiculous every day.
on March 21,2014 | 12:53PM
inlanikai wrote:
So the Connector is losing its sugar daddy. Boo hoo. Now make it on your own like the rest of us and start thinking of yourselves like the small business start-up that you are. Glad to see the Feds are pulling the plug on you.
on March 21,2014 | 01:23PM
pcman wrote:
If Matsuda had any integrity, he would advise the legislature to discontinue the Hawaii Connector. How much brains are needed to make a choice between HMSA and Kaiser. Both are good and reputable so just flip a coin.
on March 21,2014 | 02:49PM
samidunn wrote:
Just keep voting for those Democrats!
on March 21,2014 | 06:18PM
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