Alaska governor will accept federal funds to expand Medicaid

July 15, 2015

Governor Bill Walker said Alaska would accept $146 million in federal funds made available under the ACA, citing nearly 30 other states that have expanded Medicaid coverage. Walker, an independent, already had several expansion efforts blocked by the Republican-led state legislature since he took office after winning the Nov. 2014 election. He said bypassing the legislature and accepting the funds was a final option. In Alaska, the Legislative Budget and Audit Committee has the authority to review requests for federal funds when the legislature is not in session. The committee has until Sept. 1 to vote whether or not to support the state's request for money, or to recommend a special session of the legislature to review expansion options. After Walker's announcement, the committee's chairman, Representative Mike Hawker, said the panel's role is a formality and simply influences how quickly the money is made available. Expansion opponents said Alaska should not risk the possibility the federal government would pull the program and leave the state committed to something it cannot afford.
Related News:
Alaska governor moves to expand Medicaid - The Wall Street Journal
Alaska governor to expand Medicaid under Obamacare - The Hill
North Carolina advocates call for Medicaid expansion - Citizen-Times