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BUDGET NEWS: Current Year Cuts Still Up in the Air

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Discussions on cuts to the current year's budget were sidelined this week as lawmakers turned their attention to committee work. However, the deappropriation discussion is is still underway at the highest leadership levels. 
 
The Governor, House, and Senate have not yet agreed on cuts to the current budget year (fiscal year 2018).  The Senate passed its version (SF2117) on February 8; the House passed an amendment with its version out of committee (H-8012) on February 14. Here is a review:
 

Governor: $27.1 million

  • $462,871 from Iowa Department of Public Health (local boards of public health & substance use treatment)
  • $10 million from Medicaid
  • $3.3 million from DHS

Senate : $31.9 million

  • $925,742 from Iowa Department of Public Health (does not say how the cuts are made)
  • $0 from Medicaid
  • $6.2 million from DHS (does not spell out how cuts are made)
  • Adds language prohibiting any benefit cuts in Medicaid, including waivers.

House: $20.5 million 

  • $662,871 from Iowa Department of Public Health (does not say how the cuts are made)
  • $0 from Medicaid
  • $4.3 million from DHS (does not spell out how cuts are made)
  • Keeps language prohibiting any benefit cuts in Medicaid, including waivers.
  • Adds retroactive eligibility back for nursing homes only (this the ability to bill for up to three months of services provided before a person applies for Medicaid; it was eliminated last year for all providers).
The Senate and House each were able to cut $10 million less from their General Fund reductions because their versions both rely on a $10 million transfer out of the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s High Quality Jobs Program (a cut of 60%, from $15.9 million down to $5.9 million).
 
The House held a public hearing on Monday, February 19 to listen to comments about the deappropriation. You can read comments here.