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Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Correction

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AGENCY:

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, HHS.

In compliance with the requirement of section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is publishing the following summary of proposed collections for public comment. Interested persons are invited to send comments regarding this burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including any of the following subjects: (1) The necessity and utility of the proposed information collection for the proper performance of the agency's functions; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology to minimize the information collection burden.

1. Type of Information Collection Request: Extension of a previously approved collection; Title of Information Collection: Consumer Operated and Oriented (CO-OP) Program; Use: The Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) program is a new program, established by Section 1322 of the Affordable Care Act. This program provides for loans to establish at least one consumer-operated, qualified nonprofit health insurance issuer in each State. Issuers supported by the CO-OP program will offer at least one qualified health plan at the silver level of benefits and one at the gold level of benefits in the Affordable Insurance Exchanges (Exchanges). At least two-thirds of policies or contracts offered by a CO-OP will be open to individuals and small employers. Profits generated by the nonprofit CO-OPs will be used to lower premiums, improve benefits, improve the quality of health care delivered to their members, expand enrollment, or otherwise contribute to the stability of coverage offered by the CO-OP. By increasing competition in the health insurance market and operating with a strong consumer focus, the CO-OP program will provide consumers more choices, greater plan accountability, increased competition to lower prices, and better models of care, benefiting all consumers, not just CO-OP members.

The CO-OP program will provide nonprofits with loans to fund start-up costs and State reserve requirements, in the form of Start-up Loans and Solvency Loans. An applicant may apply for (1) Joint Start-up and Solvency Loans; or (2) only a Solvency Loan. Start-up Loans are intended to assist loan recipients with the many start-up costs associated with establishing a new health insurance issuer. Solvency Loans are intended to assist loan recipients with meeting the solvency requirements of States in which the applicant seeks to be licensed to issue qualified health plans.

The Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) was released on July 28, 2011. Applications will be due on October 17, 2011 and on a quarterly Start Printed Page 47592basis thereafter up to and including December 31, 2012. At that time, a new FOA will be released subject to the availability of funding. Loan awards will be announced within approximately 75 days after each completed application is received.

The purpose of this 60-day notice is to announce that CMS is seeking an extension of the information collection request (ICR) currently approved under 0938-1139. The Office of Management and Budget previously reviewed and approved the ICR under emergency processing according to 5 CFR 1320.13.

Form Number: CMS-10392 (OMB # 0938-1139); Frequency: Occasionally; Affected Public: Private sector, not-for-profit institutions; Number of Respondents: 238; Total Annual Responses: 1,139; Total Annual Hours: 39,178. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Anne Bollinger at 301-492-4395. For all other issues call 410-786-1326.)

To obtain copies of the supporting statement and any related forms for the proposed paperwork collections referenced above, access CMS's Web site at http://www.cms.gov/​PaperworkReductionActof1995/​PRAL/​list.asp#TopOfPage or e-mail your request, including your address, phone number, OMB number, and CMS document identifier, to Paperwork@cms.hhs.gov, or call the Reports Clearance Office at 410-786-1326.

In commenting on the proposed information collections, please reference the document identifier or OMB control number. To be assured consideration, comments and recommendations must be submitted in one of the following ways by October 4, 2011:

1. Electronically. You may submit your comments electronically to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for “Comment or Submission” or “More Search Options” to find the information collection document(s) accepting comments.

2. By regular mail. You may mail written comments to the following address: CMS, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs, Division of Regulations Development, Attention: Document Identifier/OMB Control Number, Room C4-26-05, 7500 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, Maryland 21244-1850.

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Dated: August 2, 2011.

Michelle Shortt,

Director, Regulations Development Group, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs.

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[FR Doc. 2011-19910 Filed 8-4-11; 8:45 am]

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