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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Shane Mekeland (R)

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House Democrats’ bill would raise health care costs, cut nursing homes

Thursday, April 25, 2019


ST. PAUL – House Democrats on Thursday are expected to pass their Health and Human Services Finance bill (H.F. 2414) which increases health care costs, cuts funding to nursing homes and fails to prevent rampant fraud in Minnesota’s childcare and other public programs.

The bill includes an extension of the health care provider tax that will add more than $2.5 billion to the cost of Minnesotans’ health care over the next four years, and includes changes to nursing home reimbursement rates that result in $68 million in cuts to Minnesota nursing facilities.

“The best thing about this bill is that it has almost zero chance of making it the governor’s desk as-is,” said Rep. Shane Mekeland, R-Clear Lake. “The sad fact is that, with a $1 billion budget surplus and billions more in proposed tax increases, House Democrats still want to raise taxes on health care and cut nursing homes.”

Mekeland said the bill also includes minimal changes to combat rampant fraud in public programs. Republican efforts to strengthen program integrity, prevent fraud, and increase penalties for fraudsters were blocked on the floor.

With the appetite for spending Democrats are showing, it makes it even harder to comprehend their lack of effort in recouping tax dollars currently being lost to widespread fraud in child care and other state programs,” Mekeland said. If they are so desperate for more money to spend, maybe they should be more eager to chase down those fraud dollars.”


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