Gov. Butch Otter hasn’t included expanding Medicaid in his budget proposal for the coming year. “On the issue of Medicaid expansion, we should not jump into the deep end without knowing what’s on the bottom,” he told lawmakers. “We must not risk our other priorities on the prospect of long-term support from a federal government that has not proven it can responsibly manage our money. So for this year, and until we are better positioned and prepared to succeed under our own terms, my answer remains: Not this year.”
He does, however, propose a 3.4 percent increase in the state’s Catastrophic Care Fund costs for next year; overall health and human services funding would rise by just 2.6 percent.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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