Curated by Rosana Garcia & Max Friedman
This week brought new developments in the state budget conversation. Now that state legislators have released proposals for spending and revenue, let’s take a look at how health care has fared.
A quick note – there are two budget proposals from the legislature:
- The Republicans released a budget proposal on Friday, April 24
- The Appropriations Committee released their budget on Monday, April 27
Because the Appropriations budget is the “official” legislative budget, we only highlight this proposal in today’s blog. The Appropriations budget assumes raising new revenue to cover the restoration of cuts proposed in Governor Malloy’s budget.
The Republican budget also restored many cuts to health and social services proposed in the governor’s budget, although they proposed different ways than the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee to pay for the cuts.
The combined Democrat and Republican budgets demonstrate a general will on the part of legislators to avoid these cuts. Neither budget was well-received by the governor.
Here is a snapshot of health care spending in the Appropriations Committee budget:
- HUSKY A (Medicaid) – The Appropriations Committee budget proposal keeps coverage for parents and pregnant women at the current higher income level (particularly important since 40 percent of Connecticut babies are born on Medicaid)
- Mental Health – The governor’s budget cuts $585,000 from the Regional Mental Health Boards (which provide an effective community voice on mental health issues), and the Appropriations budget cuts $29,000 from these boards
- School-based Health Centers – The Appropriations budget restored 75 percent of the previous rescissions (school-based health centers were hit with $2.27 million in cuts in the governor’s budget over two years). Appropriations cuts roughly $300,000 over the biennium
- Hospitals – The Appropriations budget restores many, but not all, of the Medicaid reimbursement cuts to providers, but the revenue plan includes new taxes for hospitals, making this budget a mixed bag for hospitals
- Health reform – The Appropriations budget includes $1 million for health reform, to implement proposed new laws that increase transparency and accountability in our health care system
As the legislative session continues and the state budget is finalized, we will keep you posted on new developments. The session is set to end on June 3, 2015.
Links to more details:
TrendCT: 40% of Connecticut babies are born on Medicaid (April 28, 2015)
Courant OP ED: Abolish Fatally Flawed State Spending Cap (Bill Cibes, April 28, 2015)
CT Mirror: Malloy scorns both parties’ legislative budget plans (April 30, 2015)