CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- One day before the Affordable Care Act goes into full effect and West Virginia opens its insurance marketplace, some West Virginians are excited, others ambivalent and some hate it, but most agree that they still don't know exactly what to expect.
West Virginia resident Corey Lake doesn't have health insurance now. Does he want to buy it on the Health Insurance Marketplace?
"That's a question that's kind of difficult to answer," he said. "Yes, but I want to buy health insurance that's a good value."
Lake, an employee for a software development firm, and his wife don't have insurance now, but their 8-year-old daughter does, .
Beginning in 2014, most people are required under the Affordable Care Act to have health insurance. Many will qualify for coverage under Medicaid, which will expand to allow people who make up to 138 percent of the federal poverty line, or $31,322 a year for a family of four.
Beginning Tuesday, people can purchase a plan on the Health Insurance Marketplace. Open enrollment for both the Marketplace and Medicaid lasts between Oct. 1 and March 31.
Lake says the health care reform law has overlooked people in his situation. He has a good job and makes an above average income for West Virginia, but his company doesn't offer health insurance.
Help with insurance costs, in the form of tax credits paid monthly, are available to those who earn up to 400 percent of the federal poverty line, or $78,120 for a family of three like the Lakes.
Still, the rate projections he's seen so far are high, he said.
Estimates released last week by the Department of Health and Human Services said that a family of four in West Virginia that makes $50,000 a year would pay $161 per month for the least expensive plan on the Marketplace, after tax credits are included.
"The government is asking a lot of trust for a pig in a poke," Lake said. "We've not seen what we are going to have to do yet, what we're going to have to buy into."
Exact rates on the Health Insurance Marketplace will be released Tuesday.
"I'll look [at the Marketplace]," Lake said. "I'm not going to shoot myself in the foot just out of spite... What it comes down to is if my employer doesn't offer health insurance, I'm probably not going to afford it. That's means I'll have to pay a fee."
Anthony Paranzino isn't shy about his opinion about Obamacare.
"I think it's a horrible bill," Paranzino, a longtime Charleston retailer and tailor, said, adding that the health care industry needed reform. "It's just terrible, but I think parts of it are good."
He and his wife, a state employee, and their children have insurance through the Public Employees Insurance Agency.
Paranzino, whose men's shop, Tony the Tailor, recently moved to a bigger location, said he needs to hire three more employees, but he hesitates to do so.