This November, Utahns will consider Proposition 3, which would have enormously harmful fiscal and human consequences — particularly for the least fortunate — and deserves an emphatic “no” vote.

Prop 3 would fully expand Medicaid under Obamacare, adding nearly 200,000 able-bodied, childless adults to a program that was designed for low-income pregnant women, children, elderly and disabled. It would also raise Utah’s sales tax by nearly $90 million per year to pay for it. But Prop 3 would not allow a work requirement on recipients.

Passing Prop 3 would force vulnerable women and children to compete with able-bodied adults for the limited number of health providers who will see Medicaid patients (many providers don’t take Medicaid because of lower reimbursement rates compared to private insurance).

Furthermore, since the federal government will pick up at least 90 percent of the tab for the able-bodied newcomers to the program versus the 70 percent Utah gets for the traditional Medicaid population, which group do you think will get priority?

And while you might think the federal government picking up 90 percent of the tab makes this a no-brainer, think again. The numbers are so large that the 10 percent state share is more than big enough to blow a hole in Utah’s budget — as it’s done in other states.

For proof, we just have to look to other states now experiencing buyer’s remorse in the form of gaping budget shortfalls, millions in unfunded liabilities, a reduction in government services and higher taxes, all after expanding Medicaid.

Right next door, Coloradoans have seen Medicaid grow into one of the state’s biggest expenditures. For example, last fiscal year the department managing Medicaid had a budget of $9.4 billion and composed about a third of the state’s budget.

Colorado isn’t alone. One study found that between 2013 and 2016, total Medicaid spending …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Utah News


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