One of Chip LaMarca’s session priorities is increasing KidCare eligibility
representative Chip LaMarcas The 2022 Agenda would push him to overhaul KidCare benefits to incentivize working parents, improve the playing field for college athletes, and increase the size of wine bottles allowed.
The Broward County Republican says his ambition to incentivize people to improve themselves stems from a childhood watching his mother try to make ends meet. His father died when LaMarca was young.
First on his list: Make sure parents aren’t forced to choose between getting a better job or keeping health services for their children. Too often the incentive is to stay in a lower-paying job so that a family doesn’t lose government-subsidized health benefits, he said.
So he brought in a bill (HB 419), which would double a household’s income and still be eligible for KidCare, the government-subsidized health insurance for children. His bill is structured in such a way that the premiums rise when the parents earn more money.
âIt’s one of the biggest problems in the country and state of Florida,â explains LaMarca, who lives in Lighthouse Point, the âfiscal cliffâ people are reaching. “We can create a process that will gradually enable them to step out of (state-subsidized insurance) and improve themselves.”
He also filed laws (HB 939), which will adjust and relax a rule passed last year that allows athletes to receive compensation for their name, image and likeness. The law passed last year required that the compensation come from a third party not affiliated with the athlete’s college or university. Inadvertently, it prevented coaches and sports directors from advising their young protÃ©gÃ©s about opportunities, LaMarca said.
“What we see in other states is that (regulation) doesn’t exist,” he said. “That would allow them to have the same playing field that someone in Alabama or Georgia has.”
LaMarca, used to being one of the few Republicans in the room hailing from blue Broward County, also looks forward to toasting with a glass of champagne from a larger bottle than state law currently allows – because a different one Bill (HB 6031) of it would break the current one-gallon limit for wine containers sold in Florida.
“With my Senate sponsor (SB 384), I am very confident that at the end of the session we can all toast with champagne from a Nebuchadnezzar, âhe said, referring to a bottle with 100 normal glasses.