CONSUMER OPERATED AND ORIENTED PLAN (CO-OP) ADVISORY BOARD
The Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) Advisory Panel is authorized under section 1322 of the Affordable Care Act, P.L. 111-148. The Committee is governed by provisions of Public Law 92-463, as amended, (5 U.S.C. App. 2), which sets forth standards for the formation and use of advisory committees.
Objective and Scope of Activities
Section 1322 of PPACA calls for the establishment of the Consumer Operated and Oriented Plans (CO-OP) Program, which will foster the creation of qualified nonprofit health insurance issuers to offer qualified health plans in the individual and small group markets. The Secretary will provide loans for start-up costs as well as grants to meet state solvency requirements. The legislation also calls for the Comptroller General to establish a 15 member advisory board to make recommendations to the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) with regard to the award of grants and loans. The board appointments shall be made by June 23, 2010.
Description of Duties
It shall be the function of the Committee to assist and advise the Secretary and Congress through the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (OCIIO) on the Department's strategy to foster the creation of qualified nonprofit health insurance issuers. Specifically, the Committee shall advise the Secretary and Congress concerning the award of grants and loans related to: P.L. 111-148 - Section 1322.
In these matters, the Committee shall consult with all components of the Department, other federal entities, and non-federal organizations, as appropriate; and examine relevant data sources to assess the grant and loan award strategy to provide recommendations to OCIIO.
Agency or Official to Whom the Committee Reports
The Committee shall provide advice and recommendations regarding the award of CO-OP grants and loans to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, through the designated office within the Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight.
OCIIO shall provide executive secretariat and logistical support services to the Committee and shall oversee and coordinate the overall management of the Committee. OCIIO will work with the Office of the Comptroller General, the entity which appoints board members, on the Staffing of the Committee.
Estimated Annual Operating Costs and Staff Years
Estimated annual cost for operating the Committee, including travel expenses for members but excluding staff support, is $67,500. The members shall serve without compensation.
Estimated annual person-years of staff support required is .5 at an estimated annual cost of $75,000.
Designated Federal Officer
OCIIO will select a full-time or permanent part-time Federal employee to serve as the Designated Federal Officer (DFO) to attend each Committee meeting and ensure that all procedures are within the applicable statutory, regulatory, and HHS General Administration Manual directives. The DFO will approve and prepare all meeting agenda, call the Committee and subcommittee meetings, adjourn any meeting when the DFO determines adjournment to be in the public interest, and chair meetings when directed to do so by the official to whom the Committee reports. The DFO or his or her designee shall be present at all Committee and subcommittee meetings.
Estimated Number and Frequency of Meetings
Meetings shall be held not less than annually at the call of the Designated Federal Officer starting on or before the third calendar year quarter of 2011. Meetings shall be open to the public except as determined otherwise by the Secretary, HHS or designee in accordance with the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b(c)) and Section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act. Notice of all meetings shall be given to the public. Meetings shall be conducted, and records of the proceedings kept, as required by the applicable laws and departmental regulations. In the event a portion of a meeting is closed to the public as determined by the Secretary, HHS, in accordance with the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b(c)) and Section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, a report shall be prepared which shall contain, as a minimum, a list of members and their business addresses, the Committee's functions, dates and places of meetings, and a summary of Committee activities and recommendations made during the fiscal year. A copy of the report shall be provided to the Department Committee Management Officer.
The advisory board shall terminate on the earlier of the date that it completes its duties under this section or December 31, 2015.
Exempt from Section 14 of FACA (5 U.S.C. App. 2).
Membership and Designation
States responsibility for appointing the Advisory Board’s 15 members from among individuals with qualifications described in section 1805(c)(2) of the Social Security Act. Any individual appointed under the board shall meet ethics and conflict of interest standards protecting against insurance industry involvement and interference. Any vacancy on the advisory board shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment. All members, while so serving away from their homes or regular places of business, may be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, in the same manner as such expenses are authorized by subchapter I of chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code.
Subcommittees and ad hoc subcommittees and working groups may be established with the approval of the Secretary or her designee to address specific issues and to provide the Committee with background information and proposals for consideration and action. The subcommittees shall make their recommendations to the parent Committee for deliberation. Timely notification of the subcommittees, including charges and membership, shall be made in writing to the Department Committee Management Officer by the Executive Secretary of the Committee.
The records of the Committee, established subcommittees, or other subgroups of the Committee, shall be managed in accordance with General Records Schedule 26, Item 2 or other approved agency records disposition schedule. These records shall be available for public inspection and copying, subject to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 552.
June 18, 2010