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Repeal of health mandate set

Governor Deval Patrick said Thursday that he will not block the repeal of a state mandate for employers to provide health insurance to their workers or pay a penalty, even though the Obama administration said it would delay the federal program is supposed to take its place.

The state’s landmark 2006 health care law requires employers with more than 10 workers to provide coverage or pay the state $295 per employee. But Patrick said he will not oppose a repeal of it that was included in the new state budget because of the pending federal mandate, and because Massachusetts businesses will soon pay a separate, larger surcharge.

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“I think as long as the federal mandate isn’t delayed beyond that one year, we’ll be fine,” Patrick said on WGBH radio.

The consumer group Health Care for All had pushed for Patrick to veto the repeal and allow the state mandate to stand, citing concerns that the federal law could be delayed further.

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