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Garry Rayno's State House Dome: 'Medicaid expansion' ... sweet by any other name?
Instead, you will hear about the New Hampshire Health Protection Program and the premium assistance program, mandatory and voluntary.
The compromise worked out between key Republican and Democratic state senators with the support of Gov. Maggie Hassan uses private health insurers to cover the between 50,000 and 60,000 state residents who will qualify for Medicaid services when eligibility is expanded to 138 percent of the federal poverty level under the Affordable Care Act.
Last week, Morse said the unrest over his bill is "how New Hampshire works" and that he expected the debate to continue. But he did not waver, saying that private insurance was the New Hampshire solution.
Late last week, the Breitbrat News had an article with the headline "New Hampshire Republicans Caving on Obamacare Medicaid Expansion," not something you want to see if you are a Republican senator.
The plan was revealed 2½ weeks ago. A public hearing was held the next week, and two days later, the Senate Health, Education and Human Services voted, 4-1, for the bill.
Consequently, the House vote on SB 413 will be held either during the third week in March or the first week in April, with Hassan's signature soon after unless some of the more adamant House members decide to try for a little more of what they want in Medicaid expansion, but that is unlikely to succeed.
You didn't? Well, that's the idea.
CASINO VOTE: Having held a public hearing and three or four work sessions, the House Ways and Means Committee will vote Tuesday on the bill developed by the Gaming Regulatory Oversight Authority.
Gov. Maggie Hassan is backing the bill, which has drawn all the gaming attention this year, and not the Senate-passed bill allowing for two casinos.
If you're a betting person, put your money on the committee recommending the bill be killed.
Unlike in years past, potential casino operators are not out front on this, and that may put the bill in a more favorable light. But is that enough?
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Gas Tax: The third big issue lawmakers will face this session, increasing the gas tax, will also face a committee vote Tuesday.
The bill's prime sponsor, Sen. Jim Rausch, R-Derry, will ask the committee to remove a provision that uses the consumer price index to adjust the gas tax every four years to account for inflation. The automatic increase was the more controversial aspect of the bill for many, including the Business and Industry Association, which backed the increase but opposes the indexing formula.
Other members of the committee, including Rausch, have a slightly softer stance on the gas tax, so it may well make it out of committee with a positive vote.
Last year, some Democrats joined with Republicans to kill a bill to increase the gas tax by 12 cents.
Even if the bill ultimately becomes law, the additional $30 million falls far short of what Department of Transportation Commissioner Chris Clement says is needed to fix the roads and bridges and finish the Interstate 93 expansion project from Salem to Manchester.
Modern Age: The executive councilors have joined the 21st century.
The councilors have received new iPads, which will allow the information to be delivered electronically, saving both the troopers' time and travel expenses and the cost of all that paper and printing.
"This is a big accomplishment," she said. "This will save us a lot of money and save a lot of trees."
Council District 1 Race: The money is flowing into the District 1 Executive Council race to replace the late Raymond Burton, who died last year.
Cryans has raised $38,747 since the primary election, for a total of $108,900. He spent $18,772 during the period and a total of $28,973, leaving him with a war chest of $79,727 going into the final two weeks of the campaign.
Kenney's campaign spent $3,206 since the primary, for total spending of $24,946, leaving him with a war chest of $44,025 leading up to the March 11 general election on Town Meeting Day.
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