Governor Tim Pawlenty gave an  executive order barring state agencies from participation in the health reform law.
The executive order directs state agencies to decline all discretionary participation in the new law. As a result, none of Minnesota’s executive branch departments and agencies can submit applications for grants or demonstration projects unless required by the new law or approved by the governor’s office.

“Obamacare is an intrusion by the federal government into personal healthcare matters and it’s an explosion of federal spending that does nothing to make healthcare more affordable,” Pawlenty said in a statement. “To the fullest extent possible, we need to keep Obamacare out of Minnesota. This executive order will stop Minnesota’s participation in projects that are laying the groundwork for a federally-controlled healthcare system.”

The Kaiser Family Foundation has calculated that about 250,000 Minnesotans would join the Medicaid rolls under the expansion. Pawlenty has said it would cost the state $430 million in the first three years.

Pawlenty turned down an $850,000 sex-education grant on Monday, and Minnesota was one of five states — along with Alaska, Georgia, Iowa and Wyoming — not to apply for a $1 million healthcare reform grant to strengthen its health insurance rate review process. But the state already has one of the strictest rate review requirements in the country and may not have seen a need for the grants