In February of 2019, lawmakers voted to expand Medicaid coverage to all Utahns. The carefully crafted solution balances the principles of compassion and concern for those in need with the principles of responsibility and prudence. SB 96, 4th Substitute is an outstanding example of what happens when people of different views work tirelessly together to achieve an outcome that reflects both the present needs of Utahns as well as the future concerns of the state.
Automatic Inflation Adjustment Given to Providers
If you Earn $1 Over the Medicaid Limit, You are Removed
By 2021 Funding would be short by $11 Million, by 2024 Funds Would be Short by $64 Million, and by 2025 Funds Would be Short $85 Million *(Governor’s Office of Management and Budget)
No Budget Controls
No Path or Incentive Towards Self-sufficiency
Coverage For All
Removes Automatic Inflation Adjustment (Saves $30 Million Per Year)
Creates Programs to Help People Toward Self-sufficiency
Uses New Sales Tax, Hospital Assessment, and Federal Government Paying 100% of the Cost Above 100% of Federal Poverty Level to Provide Fiscal Certainty
Ensures a Long-term Path for Healthcare with Budget Controls
Up to 12 Month Continuous Eligibility, Removing Disincentive to Make More Income than Medicaid Allows
Among other things, SB 96 accomplishes the following:
•Closes the coverage gap by ensuring that all Utahns have access to healthcare options at or below 138% of the federal poverty level (FPL).
•Enrollment begins April 1st of this year.
•Creates programs to help people now, while also paving a path to help them achieve long- term self-sufficiency and prosperity.
•Fulfills the Utah Legislature’s constitutional requirement to balance the state budget by ensuring an affordable plan that doesn’t jeopardize the state’s fiscal health.
•Ensures the long-term sustainability of the Medicaid program.
•Expands on the 0.15% tax increase in Proposition 3 by incorporating a hospital assessment to secure the program’s affordability.
Additionally, SB 96 will put the state on a dramatically better financial footing than Proposition 3. Under the original proposition, the state is projected to incur a $210 million deficit between fiscal years 2019 and 2025. Under SB 96, and over the same timeframe, the state is projected to generate a $240 million budget surplus.
This solution culminates years of effort on this issue by countless organizations and individuals who are committed to improving the lives of Utahns while also ensuring the state can continue providing for its many important services and programs.