In brief: Arizona passes Medicaid expansion

FRIDAY, JUNE 14, 2013

PHOENIX – The Arizona Legislature embraced a signature component of President Barack Obama’s health care law Thursday after a drawn out battle that divided the state’s Republican leadership and saw GOP Gov. Jan Brewer work closely with Democratic lawmakers to expand Medicaid access.

The Legislature passed Brewer’s $8.8 billion state budget and Medicaid expansion after months of stalled negotiations, tense debates and political maneuvering from both sides.

Brewer called it a “sweet victory” for Arizona’s budget and its people. The expansion will provide health insurance to an additional 300,000 poor Arizonans under a key provision of the Affordable Care Act.

A newly formed coalition of Democrats and moderate Republicans worked closely with Brewer to push back against the conservative leaders who run the Legislature and had blocked debate on the Medicaid expansion for six months. Brewer, an early critic of the Affordable Care Act, surprised the nation when she embraced the Medicaid expansion as the law of the land in her State of the State address in January.

Clinton embraces nonprofit work

CHICAGO – As she considers another White House bid, Hillary Rodham Clinton intends to work in the nonprofit world on issues like improving early childhood education, promoting the rights of women and girls, and finding ways to improve the economy – a set of priorities that could inform a 2016 presidential campaign.

The former secretary of state offered her most extensive description of her post-Obama administration agenda on Thursday since leaving her role as the nation’s top diplomat, basking in loud applause from admirers at a Clinton Global Initiative meeting in Chicago. The former first lady, a longtime advocate for women and children, said the foundation would serve as “my home” on a set of public policy initiatives close to her heart.

“What I think we have to be about is working together, overcoming the lines that divide us, this partisan, cultural, geographic (divide). Building on what we know works, we can take on any challenge we confront,” Clinton said. Reflecting the entire family’s involvement, the foundation has been renamed the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation.

Parking spot fetches $82,000

SAN FRANCISCO – Parking spots apparently aren’t immune from the recent surge in San Francisco real estate prices.

A spot in the city’s trendy South Beach neighborhood sold last week for $82,000, the San Francisco Chronicle reported on Thursday.

The parking space is in an enclosed garage in a condominium building near the San Francisco Giants’ ballpark. The Chronicle said the unidentified buyer did not respond to interview requests.

While it may seem like a lot of money, real estate agents said parking could be a good investment in densely packed San Francisco, where vehicle spaces go for a premium. They can add as much as $100,000 to the purchase price of a property or be rented out at rates of $400 to $450 a month – the going rate in South Beach.


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