The Supreme Court's landmark ruling on federal healthcare reform still leaves some unanswered questions about what the decision will mean for Alaska.
In a press conference Thursday afternoon, Republican Governor Sean Parnell said it is too soon to say how the state will move forward.
"I do not intend to saddle the state's residents with the costs of that if I can allow the federal government to cover the cost for our citizens," said Parnell.
The state is among 25 others that sued over the constitutionality of the federal healthcare law. Some Republican governors are stalling on working toward implementing the plan, with hopes that the November election will push President Obama out of the White House so Mitt Romney can push for repeal of the law.
"I'm not timing my wait on the election. What I'm timing my weight on is understanding what a 193-page decision means for us," he said.
As far as shifting costs back to the federal government, Parnell used the insurance exchange as an example. He said if the state chooses not to set one up, the federal government will at their own cost.
"He did turn down a million dollars in planning money, the only governor in the U.S. to do that," said state Sen. Hollis French (D-Anchorage), who calls the legislation "common sense" insurance reform. "So the federal government may look at his request with curiosity."
Alaska business leaders reacted to the big decision that came down from Washington, D.C. A few pointed out the uncertainty that can accompany President Barack Obama's 1,000-page healthcare law, especially in an election year, with Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney vowing to repeal the measure if he gets elected.
"I don't think we know what's going to happen in the future, which puts more uncertainty with anyone in the private sector with what we need to do and where we need to put our resources," said Brent Fisher, the president of Board Advisor Firm.
Others say with or without Obama's healthcare proposal, there are still some big issues to deal with when it comes to medical care in Alaska.
"[The healthcare bill] does not deal with the really soaring costs of healthcare that go up to 30 and 40 percent of the gross national product, that's something that's just not sustainable and everybody knows that," said Thomas Nighswander, with the WWAMI School of Medical Education.
In Alaska, an estimated 125,000 residents are uninsured.