Chaney says exchange decision expected in 15 days

By Jeff Amy/The Associated Press

JACKSON — State Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney says he expects federal regulators will announce a decision on Mississippi’s health exchange within 10 to 15 days.

Chaney restated his support for the exchange Thursday before members of the Mississippi Economic Council, which was holding its Capital Day meeting in Jackson. On the front row of the audience was Gov. Phil Bryant, whose opposition led federal officials to question whether Mississippi’s proposal should go ahead.

Exchanges are online marketplaces where people can buy insurance. Under the health law President Barack Obama signed, every state must have an exchange so people can get coverage starting in January 2014. States that don’t create their own will have one run by Washington.

Bryant contends Chaney doesn’t have the authority to run an exchange without the governor’s support.