LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) – The Latest on the final day of the Arkansas legislative session and start of a special session to deal with Medicaid and other matters (all times local):
An Arkansas House committee has advanced Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s proposal to make changes to the state’s hybrid Medicaid expansion program.
Hutchinson called for a special legislative session for lawmakers to address Medicaid and other issues, including shoring up the state’s long-term reserve fund.
More than 300,000 people are covered by Arkansas Works, the program that uses Medicaid money to buy private insurance for low-income residents. Hutchinson wants to move 60,000 people off the program, and put in place a work requirement for eligibility.
The state Department of Human Services says the move will save Arkansas at least $66 million over the next four years.
The House committee advanced the proposal Monday afternoon. It will now head to the full House for consideration.
The Arkansas Senate has failed to override a veto of a bill that would have limited who can enforce the state’s gambling laws.
Sen. Scott Flippo had wanted to make local police and prosecutors responsible for enforcing gambling laws – taking authority away from state Alcohol Beverage Control officers. Gov. Asa Hutchinson vetoed Flippo’s bill last month, saying it would require law officers to ignore illegal conduct and would ban an executive agency from enforcing state laws.
Before legislators wrapped up their regular session Monday, Flippo sought to override Hutchinson’s veto. The attempt was supported by only 15 senators – three less than the number needed to pass.
Two dozen senators had supported the bill when it passed the chamber in March.
State lawmakers are returning to Little Rock to adjourn their regular legislative session and begin a special session that’s mainly focused on changes to the state’s hybrid Medicaid expansion.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson plans to address lawmakers at 2 p.m. Monday, shortly after they begin the special session that is expected to wrap up this week.
More than 300,000 people are covered by Arkansas Works, the program that uses Medicaid money to buy private insurance for low-income residents. Hutchinson wants to move 60,000 people off the program and impose new work requirements on some recipients.
The state will need federal approval to implement those changes.
The special session’s agenda also includes “technical corrections” to medical marijuana legislation and a plan to shift more than $100 million into the state’s reserve fund.
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