The House has passed the Medicaid budget on a narrow, 37-33 vote. Rep. Paul Amador, R-Coeur d’Alene, noted that it funds Medicaid expansion at only 80% of the projected cost under the Milliman enrollment projections, which anticipated just over 90,000 Idahoans would enroll. “Currently, we’re running at about 66,000,” Amador told the House. If that goes up, the cost could be covered through a supplemental appropriation next year. Amador said a JFAC working group that crafted the budget tried to “find savings where we can,” and brought in the total Health & Welfare budget, which is spread over seven appropriation bills, at slightly below the governor’s recommendation. The bill, SB 1418, already has passed the Senate and now heads to the governor’s desk.
Betsy Z. Russell is the Boise bureau chief and state capitol reporter for the Idaho Press and Adams Publishing Group. Follow her on Twitter at @BetsyZRussell.