Kelsey, 15 Co-Sponsors, File “TennCare Fiscal Responsibility Act"

Thursday, January 31, 2013
Senator Brian Kelsey (R-Germantown) and 15 state senate co-sponsors on Thursday filed the TennCare Fiscal Responsibility Act.  Senate Bill 804 will prevent expansion of the Tennessee Medicaid program under provisions of the Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare.”  The bill is an updated version of Senate Bill 1, filed by Sen. Kelsey in November.
 
“I am pleased to have the support so far of 16 of the 33 state Senators in Tennessee, and I hope to have other members sign on as co-sponsors,” said Sen.
Kelsey.
 
Last week, a similar version of the bill, House Bill 82, was filed in the House of Representatives with 22 co-sponsors by Rep. Jeremy Durham (R-Franklin).
 
In June 2012 the United States Supreme Court ruled in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius that states have the right to opt out of Medicaid expansion without losing pre-existing federal Medicaid funding.
 
“Tennessee Taxpayers simply can’t afford $200 million a year to expand TennCare,” said Sen. Kelsey. 
 
Under the Medicaid expansion envisioned by the Affordable Care Act, Tennessee is estimated to pay $200 million a year for its 10% share to expand Medicaid to individuals with incomes up to 138% of the poverty level.  The federal government promised to pay 100% of the expansion cost for the first three years, diminishing to only 90% in future years.
 
“In 1981 Congress reduced its Medicaid funding match to help cut the federal budget deficit, and with over $16 trillion of debt, I suspect they’ll do it again,” said Sen. Kelsey.
 
Other states that have opted not to expand their Medicaid programs have also cited their doubt that the federal government will keep its promised level of funding, thus leaving state taxpayers to foot the bill.
 
The 15 co-sponsors are:
 
Sen. Janice Bowling (R-Tullahoma)
Sen. Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville)
Sen. Bill Ketron (R-Murfreesboro)
Sen. Dolores Gresham (R-Somerville)
Sen. Mike Bell (R-Riceville)
Sen. Ken Yager (R-Harriman)
Sen. Steve Southerland (R-Morristown)
Sen. Frank Niceley (R- Strawberry Plains)
Sen. John Stevens (R-Huntingdon)
Sen. Todd Gardenhire (R-Chattanooga)
Sen. Stacey Campfield (R-Knoxville)
Sen. Mae Beavers (R-Mt. Juliet)
Sen. Jim Summerville (R-Dickson)
Sen. Ferrell Haile (R-Gallatin)
Sen. Jack Johnson (R-Franklin)
 

Free Workshops Help Explain Health Insurance Terms

Medical Foundation of Chattanooga states that unfamiliarity with health insurance coverage can often cause many questions for patients and families. With new policies developed through the Affordable Care Act and “traditional” policies obtained through employers, confusion often happens in understanding benefits and the meaning of various terms. To help work through the confusion, ... (click for more)

Erlanger Hosts “First Responders” And “Strike Out Stroke” Nights At Upcoming Lookouts Games

Erlanger will recognize emergency medical service personnel and other rescue and medical agencies for “First Responder Night” at the Lookouts game on Friday, Aug. 29, beginning at 7:15 p.m.  In recognition of Erlanger’s partnership with the region’s first responders and 25 years as the region’s only Level 1 Trauma Center, Erlanger welcomes Lookout fans to take part in ... (click for more)

5 Hamilton County Schools Designated As Priority Schools, 3 As Focus Schools

Five Hamilton County Schools have been designated as Priority Schools and three as Focus Schools. Priority Schools are the five percent of schools across the state with the lowest overall performance. Those from Hamilton County are Brainerd High School, Dalewood Middle School, Orchard Knob Elementary School, Orchard Knob Middle School and Woodmore Elementary School. Focus ... (click for more)

Teen Shot Twice On Wilson Street; He Won't Help Police

A teen who was shot twice on Wilson Street shortly after midnight said he would not help police. At approximately 12:08 a.m., Chattanooga Police responded to a call of a person shot at 1812 Wilson St. Chattanooga Police officers and EMS located Nathaniel Williams, 18, suffering from two non-life threatening gunshot wounds.  The victim was transported to Erlanger Hospital ... (click for more)

The Truth About Justice

The rallying cry in Ferguson Missouri has been "justice for Michael Brown." The question is what is justice? Justice is that the facts of the case are investigated thoroughly and regardless of the outcome of that investigation the family and friends of Michael Brown along with the citizens of Ferguson and this country need to accept the outcome no matter what it reveals.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Chief Delmore: ‘You Blew It!”

Far more than 50,000 people, most police officers and law enforcement authorities, have gone to a website, “LawOfficer.com” to read a scathing letter that first appeared on Sunday. Veteran lawman Ed Delmore, who became the Police Chief in Gulf Shores, Ala., after a brilliant career as the “Top Cop” in St. Louis (which he still loves) has written what was entitled, “An Open Letter ... (click for more)