The budget from Gov. Ralph Northam (D-Va.) was almost identical to the one former Gov. Terry McAuliffe proposed in December. The state Legislature has been stuck over what to do about Medicaid expansion.
The Associated Press:
Governor Renews Calls For Medicaid Expansion In Virginia
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam renewed his call for Medicaid expansion Wednesday as he unveiled the budget he will propose to lawmakers when they return for a special session next month. But the spending plan was quickly dismissed by a top Republican, who said a fight over the budget likely won’t be resolved soon. The Democratic governor held a news conference to discuss his budget proposal, which is largely the same as the one former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe put forward in December, ahead of the start of the regular session. (Rankin, 3/21)
The Washington Post:
Va. Gov. Ralph Northam Proposes New Budget. And It Looks Really Familiar.
McAuliffe’s spending plan died March 10, when the GOP-controlled General Assembly wrapped up its 60-day session without resolving a standoff over Medicaid expansion. The Senate opposed expansion. The House supported it, although with certain strings attached, such as imposing co-pays and work requirements on enrollees. Under the Affordable Care Act, the federal government would pay 90 percent of the $2 billion-a-year cost of expanding Medicaid eligibility in Virginia. Northam’s plan would pay the state’s 10 percent share by taxing hospitals, an idea the House has embraced. (Vozzella, 3/21)
Northam Introduces New State Budget With Medicaid Expansion And A Twist: He Wants Extra Revenue Saved, Not Spent
When legislators adjourned on March 10 without a deal, the two budgets were at least $400 million apart. Because the House’s Medicaid expansion plan would be funded with federal dollars and a new tax on hospitals, House budget writers had more money to spend on public education and other services. The Virginia Education Association estimates the House budget allocated $169 million more to K-12 schools than the Senate version. (Moomaw, 3/21)
In other Medicaid news —
Kaiser Health News:
States Extend Medicaid For Birth Control, Cutting Costs — And Future Enrollment
The Trump administration is weighing whether to allow Texas to receive millions of federal Medicaid dollars for its family planning program, which bars abortion providers. The Lone Star State eliminated its Medicaid-funded family planning program five years ago when state officials said they wanted to specifically exclude Planned Parenthood because the group provides abortions. Dozens of women’s health clinics closed as Texas established a wholly state-funded program that officials say today serves 220,000 women. (Galewitz and Gorman, 3/22)
Caregiver, Health Care Advocates Fear Impacts Of TennCare Work Requirement Proposal
Although the measure doesn’t immediately enact such work requirements, it directs the state to submit a waiver to the federal government seeking to impose them on able-bodied, working-age TennCare recipients. Those affected by the legislation would be parents or caretakers with children from 6 to 20 years old, which would impact [Malcom] Alaimo in just two years. Alaimo fears the legislation, which is up for a vote on the Senate floor Thursday, would give her few choices: get a job, seek disability with the state or move her family once again. (Ebert, 3/21)
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