CHARLESTON, W.Va. — State lawmakers were told Wednesday there will be cash flow problems with Medicaid unless they allocate more money to the health care program by March 2014.

State Revenue Secretary Bob Kiss and members of his department explained the state’s budget situation with an interim legislative committee meeting at the state capitol.

State Budget Director Mike McKown said Medicaid’s cash flow is doing well now but won’t be in a few months because the program is about $109 million short of where the Tomblin administration and lawmakers planned for it to be. He said any extra money in the new budget year would probably have to be allocated to make up the gap.

The shortage is the result three unplanned moves.

McKown said state lawmakers passed a bill at the end of the regular session that would have transferred $67 million in excess lottery funds to Medicaid but the transfer was not allowed by the state Auditor because of a technical flaw. Medicaid was also supposed to get up to $50 million in what was left in excess lottery funds at the end of the fiscal year, but only $29 million came in. The state Budget Office also cut Medicaid by $17 million at the end of the fiscal year and shifted the money to make sure the state had its required balanced budget. McKown said those three moves equal the $109 million shortage.

“Medicaid’s cash flow is pretty good right now but by the middle of March (2014) if we don’t appropriate some money to Medicaid there’s going to be some cash flow problems,” McKown predicted.

Delegate Daryl Cowles, R-Morgan, questioned McKown and Revenue Secretary Bob Kiss for cutting Medicaid by $17 million to make the state budget balance. Kiss said state law allows the governor to do what’s necessary to make the budget balance.

McKown said those overseeing the state budget had to make a decision because there weren’t enough tax revenues coming in the last week of June.

“On the last day of the fiscal year we really didn’t have many options. If we would not have cut them the last day nothing would have gotten re-appropriated,” according to McKown.

Medicaid is a joint federal and state program that pays for health care for the poor and elderly. Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin decided to expand Medicaid earlier this year. It’s anticipated an additional 91,000 state residents will receive coverage.

 

bubble graphic

22

bubble graphic

Comments

  • David

    Ok, band of geniuses, do the sick people just suffer, then die slowly and painfully at home?
    You morons act like Obamacare or the Medicaid expansion is going to cause people to need medical care, when they'll need it whether or not they have insurance. Jesus wept.

    • Luke

      What makes you think that health care is not available to the sick now?

      In fact Obamacare requires insurance companies to cover a lot of preventive care procedures, which are now optional under most policies. As a result, an individual will see a sharp rise in their insurance premiums as Obamacare is implemented.

  • Dennis

    When the Association of Counties and the Teacher's Union began to stump for raises, the Tomblin Administration had to announce a plan to utilize any excess funds that may have been available for raises.

  • Rodney Hytonen

    "Obamacare" (actually Romneycare, created and developed at the ultra-Right Wing Heritage Foundation...) will actually be paying for 100% of that Medicaid expansion, so it reduces rather than exacerbates that problem.

    Stop watching Fox and listening to Limbaugh expecting facts.

    • realitycheck

      ... I've got a bridge to sell you.....

    • susanf

      I don't watch Fox or listen to Limbaugh. But I do know that there is no free ride. Someone will be paying for this expansion and guess who that will be?? The taxpayers, of course! Certainly no one who qualifies for Medicaid will be contributing anything toward paying for it!!

  • susanf

    And yet, Genius Tomblin decided to expand Medicaid. Now where in the world is the money going to come from to pay for almost 100,000 MORE enrollees??

    • Charleston,WV

      That's an easy answer. The money will come from your pockets. Next question please.

      • realitycheck

        yeah, just shut up and pay your fair share.

        • Charleston,WV

          I do everyday brothaman. Keep up the Good fight as well!

        • FungoJoe

          53% of us are overpaying our fair share. Its the 47% that are not, they are only "the takers".

    • Charleston,WV

      I am sure my state tax return check will increase next year, even with the maximum withheld.

      • susanf

        Yeah, sure it will! LOL! Not only will it be less, you will be lucky to get it at all. Our son filed his tax return on time, simple return, nothing unusual about it and he just got his refund - almost 6 mo. later than the filing deadline. We are in deep trouble w/Tomblin and his band of bumbling idiots in charge. Of couse, he is nothing but Joe Manchin's shill (or maybe placeholder) anyway. If Manchin loses his reelection to the Senate, we can expect a return to state politics. There's nothing in the State Constitution to prevent him from running again, is there? Sorry, I'm not a native West Virginian, so I don't know the answer to that. No Golden Horseshoe for me!

  • FungoJoe

    This is just the beginning.
    Welcome ObamaCare!!!

    • Charleston,WV

      And don't forget to say goodbye Rainy Day Fund as they're out the door!

  • CaptainQ

    And then we wonder why fewer doctors are accepting Medicaid patients?

    This is 'Exhibit A', sad but true.

    And this will only get worse when the 'expanded' Medicaid in WV kicks in.

  • Martinsburg Resident

    Wecome to OBAMAVILLE!!! USSA (United Socialist States of America). With Healthcare now in shambles, bankrupting each state, it is time to now bankrupt the COAL industry. Congratulations America, Obama is only doing what he promised to do... FUNDAMENTALLY CHANGE THIS COUNTRY!

  • Charleston,WV

    "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.”
    _ Margaret Thatcher 8/13/25 - 4/18/13

    • Chris

      Amen

    • Rodney Hytonen

      Wisdom? From the most hated woman in England.

      • Charleston,WV

        No, that's Kate Hopkins. Google it.

    • Luke

      I believe Lady Thatcher included that statement in a speech she gave at William & Mary during her tenure as Chancellor there.

      I heard her speak there in 1997. Lady Thatcher was a great orator and leader.