Tag: Fiscal responsibility

New Iowa health care disaster approaches: End of hawk-i

State of Iowa facing millions more in costs while kicking 44,000 children off health insurance

DES MOINES  –  Iowa’s outstanding health insurance for children is at risk due to the Congressional failure to reauthorize the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).  Without federal action, the state of Iowa faces millions more in costs even though 44,000 fewer children would be insured.

State Senator Nate Boulton of Des Moines, a board member for Iowa’s nationally praised hawk-i children’s health insurance program, called for “swift

, firm, united action” after the organization’s Monday board meeting.

“This crisis affects families in every county of this state.  This is an ‘all hands on deck’ moment for Iowa’s elected leaders,” said Boulton.  “In January, the Legislature should immediately approve a resolution officially requesting that Congress reauthorize the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Then, we should all be urging Governor Reynolds to travel to D.C. to make that case to the House, the Senate, and President Trump.”

On September 30th, Congress failed to reauthorize CHIP for the first time in the nearly 30 years of the program’s existence.

There are two components to hawk-i, Iowa’s version of CHIP.  One covers the 16,000 Iowa kids enrolled in Medicaid expansion.  They are the lucky ones in that they will continue to have health insurance for at least the next two years.  However, without a federal reauthorization of CHIP funding, Iowa’s state budget will be required to cover the shortfall.  That will mean additional costs of $10 to $15 million per year to Iowa’s already troubled state budget.

Things are much worse for the 44,000 Iowa children enrolled in Iowa’s nationally-recognized hawk-i program.  Those children will lose their health insurance completely when funding runs out, something that is expected to happen this February.

“We need swift, firm, united action to prevent a children’s health care crisis in Iowa,” Boulton said. “It’s this simple: If CHIP isn’t reauthorized, 44,000 fewer children in our state will have access to the high quality health care hawk-i provides.”

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Iowans are still paying price of failed GOP policies

Iowa Senate News Release
For Immediate Release: December 11, 2017  

 

Statement on the updated revenue estimates by Senator Joe Bolkcom,
Ranking Member of Senate Appropriations Committee

“Economic prosperity and fiscal responsibility will only return to Iowa if Governor Reynolds and Republican legislators start working in a bipartisan way to make smarter investments in Iowa workers and their families.

“With complete control of the Iowa Capitol, Statehouse Republicans adopted a my-way-or-the-highway approach to budget and policy decisions during the 2017 session. This meant that they ignored the voices of working Iowans who were begging Statehouse Republicans to keep their two biggest campaign promises: Raise family incomes by 25 percent and create 200,000 new Iowa jobs.

“Governor Reynolds and legislative Republicans continue to break those big promises and working Iowans – especially those in smaller towns and rural areas – are paying the price.

“Senate Democrats remain ready to work with legislative Republicans and the Governor on a mid-course correction that will restore fiscal stability to our state budget by investing in successful job-creation initiatives and taking a serious look at out-of-control spending on tax credits.”

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