Posted: Mar 30, 2011 11:38 AM by Breanna Biehl
BATON ROUGE- The governor's budget uses nearly $86 million from the sale of three state prisons to plug into the Medicaid program and generate millions in additional federal matching cash.
Problem is, the prison sales haven't been approved by lawmakers, and if they refuse, that could strip dollars that are supposed to pay doctors, hospitals and nursing homes for taking care of Medicaid patients.
Members of the House Appropriations Committee who don't support the prison sales were not happy about the connection.
Gov. Bobby Jindal's top budget adviser, Paul Rainwater, says the one-time money would help private health providers make it through a tough financial year. And he says the prison sales will save the state money long-term.
The new fiscal year begins July 1.