Alexander, Corker Urge Quick Approval Of Governor’s Request For Flexibility To Provide Health Care To 175,000 Tennesseans

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Tennessee Republican Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker on Thursday urged the Obama administration to quickly consider Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam’s request for flexibility in using the federal dollars provided to expand health care coverage to 175,000 Tennesseans under the new health care law.

In a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Senators Alexander and Corker said: “We write to ask that you give timely and speedy consideration to a request announced today by Governor Bill Haslam to provide health care coverage to 175,000 Tennesseans by leveraging available federal dollars in the new exchange.

"Nashville is the health care services capital of the country and if your Department would support Tennessee in doing what the state does best, Tennessee will continue to find innovative ways to provide better care for its citizens. We urge you to work with Governor Haslam to implement his vision for achieving quality health care for Tennesseans by Tennesseans, particularly for those who currently do not have health insurance.”

The senators also noted that they last week introduced a bipartisan budget amendment to end the department’s practice of stalling state Medicaid waiver applications, in some instances for years, which has slowed innovations in care for Medicaid patients and impeded states’ ability to manage their annual budget process.

The senators added: “In this time of state budget constraints it is more important than ever that states have the necessary flexibility to determine how best to care for its citizens.”

The full text of the letter is below:

March 28, 2013

The Honorable Kathleen Sebelius

Secretary of Health and Human Services

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

200 Independence Avenue, SW

Washington, DC 20201

Dear Secretary Sebelius:
 
We write to ask that you give timely and speedy consideration to a request announced today by Governor Bill Haslam to provide health care coverage to 175,000 Tennesseans by leveraging available federal dollars in the new exchange. Nashville is the health care services capital of the country and if your Department would support Tennessee in doing what the state does best, Tennessee will continue to find innovative ways to provide better care for its citizens. We urge you to work with Governor Haslam to implement his vision for achieving quality health care for Tennesseans by Tennesseans, particularly for those who currently do not have health insurance.
 
Last week, we introduced a bipartisan amendment to the budget which would help ensure a smooth timeline for states and the federal government to decide on Medicaid waiver requests.  In this time of state budget constraints it is more important than ever that states have the necessary flexibility to determine how best to care for its citizens.
 
Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.  Should your staff have questions please have them contact our staff, Alicia Hennie at 202-xxx-xxxx, or Mike Bassett at 202-xxx-xxxx.
 
Sincerely,
 
Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker


Man Wanted For Philadelphia Double Murder Caught In Bradley County

A man wanted for a double homicide out of Philadelphia, Pa., was arrested early Tuesday in Bradley County. M embers of the Bradley County Criminal Investigations Division conducted a traffic stop on I-75 Northbound at the 29 mile marke. Upon interviewing those in the vehicle, it was determined one was wanted on the murders. He was taken into custody and has been booked ... (click for more)

Collegedale Near Completion Of Land Use Plan; New Greenway Eyed

Mayor John Turner said 10 years ago Collegedale chose to be pro-active when it came to growth. The goal was for the city to look as if had been planned as it developed. Now Collegedale is one of the fasting growing cities in Hamilton County. The city’s planning commission is nearing the end of the process to develop a new land use plan - the second one created in the last 30 years. ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Lost Its Most Popular Citizen - Luther Masingill

Chattanooga has lost its most popular citizen – Luther Masingill. Although we are saddened we cherish the memories.  All of us have a Luther story.  Mine is the first time I met Luther.  This was before TV and all of Chattanooga listened to Luther on the radio.  I was 12-years-old.  Some of my buddies and I had gone to the State Theater in downtown ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: An Election Day Fable

Every day I am peppered with emails that friends send to me from across the country so I am unsure of where the fable you are about to read originated. But with early voting for the November general election now in full swing, I think everyone who will -- or will not -- take part in freedom’s greatest privilege should read this story because I believe there is a great lesson contained ... (click for more)

Tennessee Wastes No Time Shifting Attention To Alabama

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – L ittle time had passed following Tennessee's 34-3 loss to Ole Miss on Saturday night before the challenge that lies ahead this week crossed the mind of the UT staff. In past years, a loss of that type could have had a lasting impact on the psyche of the team. But  Tennessee coach Butch Jones   still sees his team progressing, both mentally ... (click for more)

Ooltewah's Riley Hickman: 2-for-2 Wins At Cleveland And Talladega

The “Hustler” Riley Hickman of Ooltewah hunkered down this weekend and picked up a pair of wins in Dirt Track competition. Friday night the # R1 “Hickman Manufacturing, American Billett, Austin Trucking, Tucker Mobile Home Service, Allstar Graphics, VP Racing Fuels, RH Designs, Competition Racing Equipment, A-1 Towing, MRC” sponsored CVR / Vic Hill powered machine ... (click for more)