Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Make a gift to NHPR and have a Valentine's message to a loved one read on air!
NH News

Medicaid Battle Looms In Budget Negotiations

Governor Maggie Hassan, House Speaker Terie Norelli and Senate Minority Leader Sylvia Larsen all say expanding Medicaid under so-called Obamacare is a good deal for NH:  About 60,000 more people would have insurance,  and $2.5B would flow to the state at a cost of about $85M over seven years. Republicans in the senate didn’t include expansion in their budget, and instead have proposed a commission to study the issue. But Senator Larsen and Speaker Norelli say they support exploring whether expansion can take even if the Senate opposes it.

LARSEN: "I believe the Governor’s staff is looking at it. I hope the attorney general’s office is looking at it.

NORELLI: "I also have my legal counsel looking at it as well.'

The Senate’s top budget-writer, Republican Chuck Morse of Salem says he doesn’t think the Governor has authority to expand Medicaid without legislative approval.

A spokesman for Governor Hassan says it "appears" the legislature would need to approve Medicaid expansion. But he added that delaying expansion even one years could cost N.H. up to $340m in federal funds.