Chip LaMarca session priorities include increasing KidCare eligibility

Chip LaMarca session priorities include increasing KidCare eligibility

representing Chip LaMarca’s Agenda 2022 would call on him to revamp KidCare benefits to entice working parents, level the playing field for college athletes, and increase the size of wine bottles allowed.

The Broward County Republican says his ambition to inspire people to improve themselves comes from a childhood spent watching his mother try to make ends meet. Her father died when LaMarca was young.

First on its list: ensuring that no parent is forced to choose between taking a better job or keeping health benefits for their children. Too often, the incentive is to stay in a lower paying job so that a family does not lose their state-subsidized health benefits, he said.

He therefore tabled a bill (HB 419) which would double the amount of income a household can earn and still be eligible for KidCare, the publicly funded health insurance for children. His bill has a structure for premiums to increase as parents earn more money.

“It’s one of the biggest issues nationwide and in the state of Florida,” said LaMarca, who lives in Lighthouse Point, explaining the “tax cliff” that people are reaching. “We can create a process that allows them to gradually get out of (state-subsidized insurance) and improve. “

He also tabled a law (HB 939) which will modify and loosen a rule adopted last year which allows student-athletes to receive compensation for their name, image and likeness. The law passed last year required that compensation come from a third party not affiliated with the athlete’s college or university. Unintentionally, this made it difficult for coaches and athletic directors to advise their youngsters on the opportunities available to them, LaMarca said.

“What we’re seeing in other states is that (the regulations) don’t exist,” he said. “It would allow them to have the same rules of the game as someone in Alabama or Georgia.”

LaMarca, who is used to being one of the only Republicans in the room coming from Broward’s Blue County, is also looking forward to toasting everything with a sip of champagne from a larger-than-law bottle. State does not currently allow it – because another bill (HB 6031) of his would override the current state gallon limit for wine containers sold in Florida.

“With my Senate sponsor (SB 384), I am very confident that we will all be able to clink our glasses at the end of the session with champagne poured from a Nebuchadnezzar, ”he said, referring to a bottle that holds 100 regular glasses.

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