Obamacare Co-Ops Lose Millions, Use Gov Approved Fuzzy Math to Report Assets

The federal government authorizes Obamacare co-ops to us fuzzy math to hide the truth: it is collapsing, and even as these these co-ops collapse, their CEO’s are paid six-figure salaries as they go out the door.


From the Washington Free Beacon:

Co-ops created under Obamacare reported net assets despite losing millions because they used an accounting trick approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Tax filings for 18 co-ops, including nine that collapsed in 2015, also revealed that co-op CEOs were paid handsomely before many had to shut down.

In July 2015, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services amended its agreement with co-ops, allowing them to list $2.4 billion in loans they received from taxpayers as assets.

“This notice is to inform you that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will now allow co-ops to request that surplus notes be applied to Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (co-op) Program start-up loans,” the agency said in a notice to co-op project officers. “Applying surplus notes to the startup loans will enable co-op borrowers to record those loans as assets in financial filings with regulators.”

Citizens Against Government Waste, a nonprofit that seeks to eliminate inefficiency in government, said the notice permitted Obamacare co-ops to use fuzzy math to mask their true financial situation.

“Taxpayers expect to hear the truth about Obamacare’s co-ops,” Curtis Kalin, the group’s spokesman, said. “It is unconscionable that CMS attempted to obscure the financial disaster the co-ops have become through gimmicks and loopholes.

“The fact that failed co-op CEOs received bonuses is ethical salt in a festering fiscal wound,” he said.

Though 21 of 23 co-ops lost money in 2014, most listed net gains on their 990 forms filed with the IRS. Additionally, CEOs were paid well over six figures, including the Health Republic Insurance of New York, which paid its president and CEO $427,000.

That co-op closed last fall and is now under investigation for its finances.

The nine co-ops that collapsed in 2015 paid their CEOs a combined $2.8 million.

New Mexico Health Connections listed net assets of $23.2 million in 2014, though it lost $2.97 million the same year. Every employee of the co-op made over six figures, including CEO Martin Hickey who made $262,874.

Have you heard about any of these failing co-ops on the pretend news? I didn’t think so. As Hillary Clinton screeches her way across the country, talking about building on Obama’s accomplishments, perhaps it would be a good idea to ask her if she includes Obamacare in that list (she does), and when she says “yes,” ask her to explain this fuzzy math. And, as Donald Trump promises that everyone will be “taken care of” and that “the government will pay” so that no one is “dying in the streets,” perhaps we might want to ask him for some specifics on how he plans to make that happen.


  1. The same way unemployment is 5% when it really is 9.5-10%.

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