The Richmond Register

State News

August 25, 2009

Stimulus money helps state balance Medicaid

FRANKFORT — Kentucky’s Medicaid system would be more than $230 million in the ole without the influx of federal stimulus money.

At the same time, the state is short of money because of a deep recession, the demands on Medicaid have grown as a result of the depression, according to Medicaid Commissioner Betsy Johnson, adding 3,000 eligible participants each month since June of 2008.

But $303.4 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) — the federal stimulus — in fiscal year 2009 and a projected $486.0 million in 2010 has balanced the books and even allowed the state to transfer $63 million of general fund dollars in 2009 and $383 million in 2010 from Medicaid to soften budget cuts to other areas of state government.

That is because the extra federal money allows the state to reduce its portion of the bill from 30 percent to 20 percent on each dollar. Kentucky went from a 70-30 federal-state match to 80-20 because its unemployment rate rose above 8.9 percent. From January 2008 until July 2009, in fact, the unemployment rate rose from 5.9 percent to nearly 11 percent.

That poses a potential problem, however, according to Rep. Jimmie Lee, D-Elizabethtown, co-chair of the General Assembly’s Medicaid Oversight and Advisory Committee.

If Kentucky’s unemployment rate were to fall below 8.9 percent, the match would return to 70-30 — and the state has already allocated the general fund dollars it would need to make up the extra 10 percent.

“If the unemployment falls — and I hope it does — and the (federal) match is reduced, we don’t have that general fund amount to provide the state match,” Lee said Monday.

Johnson agreed: “We want the unemployment rate to go down, but if it does, the Medicaid match will drop,” Johnson said. Still, she said, there is a direct correlation between the unemployment rate and the number applying for Medicaid assistance. As more people return to work, the number of eligible participants should also decline.

Text Only
State News
  • Bill Clinton will stump for Grimes in eastern Kentucky

    Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is again calling in the “Big Dog” in her quest to unseat five-term Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.

    Former President Bill Clinton will join Grimes on Aug. 6 for a campaign rally in eastern Kentucky, according to a campaign official who would provide no further details.

    July 26, 2014

  • 7-1 Warren-Grimes 1.jpg Warren blasts McConnell on economic issues

    Elizabeth Warren said here Sunday that Kentucky voters have a simple choice this fall in the nation’s most important election.
    They can re-elect Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, who the Massachusetts Democratic U.S. Senator said represents the interests of the wealthy and says “no, no, no” to measures to assist the middle class.

    June 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • Healthcare signup in state extended

    While the national health exchange established by the Affordable Care Act — known to some as Obamacare — suffered glitches, crashes and delays, the Kentucky-run exchange, Kynect, often was cited as a national model.
    Nevertheless, those in Kentucky who didn’t sign up before the March 31 deadline will have a second chance to enroll.

    April 3, 2014

  • House sends $20.3 million budget to Senate

    It took four hours and it won’t last long in its present form when it reaches the Republican-controlled state Senate, but the House passed a $20.3 billion, two-year budget late Thursday on largely, but not entirely, party lines.

    March 13, 2014

  • Right-to-work bill dies in House panel

    The sponsor of a right-to-work law in Kentucky knew it had no chance of passing a House committee Thursday.

    March 13, 2014

  • Feds deny giving OK to selenium standards

    When lawmakers wrestled last year with new standards for releasing selenium into streams by coal mines and industry, they were assured by state officials the proposals were based on sound science and approved by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials.

    March 7, 2014

  • Senate panel OKs trial use of cannabis oil

    Rita Wooten and her husband Ricky face an excruciating choice: watch their 4-year-old son suffer from repeated seizures — or violate the law in order to help him.

    February 26, 2014

  • Two honored for work with sexually abused

    It’s Erica Brown Myers’ job to help those who have been victimized by sexual abuse. But helping others can take a toll on the helper as well as the victim.

    February 26, 2014

  • Paul asks Senate for help in 2016 quandary

    Republican U.S. Sen. Rand Paul last week asked Republican state senators to try to repeal a Kentucky law that bars anyone from appearing on the same ballot for more than one office.

    February 24, 2014

  • Republican party split on display in Cave City

    Splits in the Kentucky Republican Party were subtly on display here Saturday evening – if you knew what to watch.

    Around 400 gathered at the Cave City Convention Center for the annual Barren County Lincoln Day Dinner but this one was different from past dinners.

    February 24, 2014

AP Video
Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Should Madison County’s three local governing bodies ban smoking in indoor public places?

     View Results