BOISE, Idaho – Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter on Friday signed an executive order aimed at creating more affordable health insurance options.

The order, signed by the governor today during the Associated Press Legislative Preview in the Capitol, instructs Insurance Director Dean Cameron to seek ways outside the restrictions of the Affordable Care Act to make health coverage more affordable for Idaho residents.

Executive Order 2018-02

“Congress and President Trump have eliminated the individual mandate requiring all Americans to buy Obamacare plans or face financial penalties,” Otter said. “That means we will no longer be penalized for buying coverage that doesn’t meet all the Obamacare rules.

“We have been waiting patiently while Congress has been unable to find a solution and Idaho families have been forced to buy products that are too expensive and loaded with benefits they don’t want or need. Now the door is open for states to pursue our own reasonable solutions. We believe Idaho will lead the way in states taking back control of their insurance markets.”

Cameron said he hopes insurance plans from Idaho carriers can be available as early as March to reduce costs for essential health-care coverage by 30 to 50 percent.