Some Texans refuse to sign up for Obamacare, ready to face fines - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |


Some Texans refuse to sign up for Obamacare, ready to face fines

CENTRAL TEXAS - If you don't have health insurance, Monday is the last day to enroll in Obamacare before the fines kick in.  Some people here in Central Texas are refusing to sign up.

There are folks who say they've tried to sign up without any luck.  Some say it's too expensive and others refuse to enroll on principle alone.

Amber Mezzacappa of Copperas Cove says, "If they just lowered the premium to a more affordable rate for the blue collar community, I feel like that idea could be good and it could help us, but right now I just feel like it's a money hungry charade and I don't agree with it."  

Mezzacappa says it would cost her family more than $10,000 a year to be insured under Obamacare.  A former supporter of the president, Mezzacappa says that's money she doesn't have and this is not where she wants to spend it. 

"I realized he's still not living up to his promises so now I don't trust him or Obamacare," she says.

But as of March 1st, about 300,000 Texans had enrolled in Obamacare. Still, one in four are uninsured.  That's the highest rate in the nation.  

McLennan County's Health Services Director, Eva Cruz Hamby, says people in Texas face an additional hurdle since state lawmakers chose not to expand Medicaid coverage.  That means Texans who make less than $14,000 a year don't qualify for Medicaid or subsidies.

Cruz Hamby says, "There are quite a few people who are below that, who can't find work or who work part time or who are sick and can't work.  So there are a lot of people out there who are left with nothing."

And Mezzacappa says she'll have to be one of those people, for now, "If you're healthy, I feel like that should be a choice and not something that's forced upon you.  We shouldn't have to be told what to do and how to do it.  That is our right to choose whether we want healthcare or not."   

The fine for not enrolling in Obamacare is $95 or 1 percent of a person's annual salary, whichever is higher.
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