Despite widespread concerns from lawmakers that the proposal was unfairly burdensome to counties, the Legislature approved changes to the Medicaid program on Friday night.
The House approved HB 5301 on a 73-36 vote that split mainly along party lines. However, several Republicans joined the Democratic Caucus in voting against the measure.
Their beef was provision in the legislation that forces counties to pay back roughly $300 million in disputed Medicaid bills over 5 years. The state will withhold revenue sharing dollars from the counties for both the backlog and future Medicaid payments.
The vote in the Senate was much closer and showed the tough decisions lawmakers faced in a bill that had provisions they both liked and disliked. For example, HB 5301 also included a provision that allows state employees to enroll their children in the KidCare health insurance program.