Rural hospitals are cutting services and even worse, closing. Billions of dollars meant to support health care in NC have been sent to other states, to those states smart enough to take advantage of great deal to expand Medicaid. Stop hurting NC’s people and economy, Senator Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore. Expand Medicaid NOW! The Coronavirus is exposing how close to the edge many people live with no savings and no health care and so many jobs lost or suspended during the pandemic. More people will die because local hospitals have closed, hospitals that expanding Medicaid would have supported.
NC NOW is sharing Health Action NC’s letter to the NCGA leadership and Governor Cooper to close the coverage gap in NC by expanding Medicaid. 158 orgs, business owners and associations signed on in a matter of days. You can sign a petition urging NC Legislature to Expand Medicaid as an Emergency Response to coronavirus COVID-19.
See whole report including summary and bill tracking at NC NOW Legislative Update #29.v1
The fireworks over the House vote to override the budget veto continue. Rep. Darren Jackson has taken a lie detector test and challenged Speaker Moore to do the same. At issue is whether Rep. Jackson was told that the session where the vote to override the budget veto was taken would be a no voting session. Speaker Moore dismissed the challenge claiming that it was a publicity stunt. See: https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2019/09/23/representative-takes-lie-detector-test-after-budget-veto-override
North Carolina NOW Legislative Update—September 3, 2019
Jump to the full summary and listing of bills NC NOW is tracking at NC NOW Legislative Update #27 (3Sep19).
There has been movement on both the budget and Medicaid transformation. To get around the impasse over the vetoed budget, the legislature has passed a slew of stand-alone budget bills addressing specific areas. Most significantly, bills giving pay raises to various state employees were passed and signed by Governor Cooper because both the vetoed budget and the Governor’s proposed compromise budget agree on these pay raises. However, the two budgets do not agree on pay raises for teachers. The bill dealing with teacher pay raises was sent back to committee because Democrats had prepared ten amendments. Republicans did not want recorded votes against these proposed amendments. This summary by Rep. Marcia Morey of Durham nicely sums up the situation:
Posted in budget, legislative update, Medicaid, medicaid expansion, NC budget, state budget issues, teachers
Tagged budget, medicaid, medicaid expansion, NC budget, nc budget issues
Stories are powerful. Filmmaker Rebecca Cerese captured stories from people around the state who are caught in the health care coverage gap. She shared some stories on film and some she told. One of Rebecca’s storytellers came in person and her story of her daughter was heartbreaking.
Watching one of the stories Photo Credit: Gailya Paliga
“Living without health insurance is like playing Russian Roulette with your life.” Jesse, Moore County. All over our State, many North Carolinians are unable to get the medical care they need because they don’t have any health coverage. Rebecca Cerese, the Health Engagement Coordinator for the NC Justice Center, amplifies their stories, in hopes of creating real policy change. She will be sharing some of these stories and discussing ways we can work together to fix this problem.
Filmmaker Rebecca Cerese at work, Photo Credit: Steve Whitsitt
You can go directly to the full legislative update, NC_NOW_Legislative_Update #24 (29Jul19), which includes the week’s summary and bill listings. Written by Robin Davis, NC NOW Vice President of Political Action and Lobbyist. Summary includes the state budget impasse and a lawmaker has resigned his seat after pleading guilty to cyberstalking his estranged wife.
Still no vote on whether to override the governor’s veto of the budget and no progress to report on a stand-alone bill to expand Medicaid. The Winston-Salem Journal reported, “As has been the pattern for 11 consecutive sessions, neither the veto override vote nor the bipartisan Medicaid expansion legislation House Bill 655 was addressed.” “The next opportunity will come Monday night [7/29/19], which would represent Day 32 of the stalemate.” See: https://www.journalnow.com/news/state/n-c-house-pushes-possible-votes-on-state-budget-veto/article_00c86259-3fb7-5758-9ed5-9aff47c9c693.html
Posted in budget, cyberstalking, domestic violence, Medicaid, medicaid expansion, state budget issues, veto
Tagged budget, cyberstalking, domestic violence, medicaid, medicaid expansion, state budget
A coalition of organizations held a community conversations event “Public Education, Medicaid Expansion and the State Budget” in Fayetteville on Thursday, 7/25/19. Attendees heard from many very well qualified speakers on two panels – the first panel included community leaders, doctors, patients on need for Medicaid Expansion and returning public education to place of importance in state, and the second panel included some history of Medicaid expansion in NC and current shenanigans and chances with past and present lawmakers.
Early full house from back Photo Credit: Gailya Paliga
Posted in ACA, education, health care, Medicaid, medicaid expansion, Obamacare, Obamacare, public education, state budget issues, tax giveaways, teachers
Tagged ACA, health care, medicaid, medicaid expansion, Obamacare, state budget, state budget issues, tax giveaways, teachers
Option to go directly to the NC_NOW_Legislative_Update_#23.15jul19.v2, with summary and bill listings. Written by Robin Davis, NC NOW Vice President of Political Action and Lobbyist. Summary follows.
No vote yet whether to override the governor’s veto of the budget. Republicans are scrambling, trying to find enough votes to override (i.e., offering pork), but are meeting Democratic resistance. One account summarized the situation: “All day, Democratic lawmakers were in and out of House Speaker Tim Moore’s (R-King’s Mountain) corner office, only to be confronted by their fellow party members in the hallways afterward. At times, some lawmakers looked distressed, fingers were pressed into chests, exchanges, became heated. One lawmaker looked ready to cry.” See: https://www.northcarolinahealthnews.org/2019/07/10/lawmakers-strong-arm-over-budget-medicaid-expansion-but-come-up-empty-handed/.
Go directly to the NC_NOW_Legislative_Update #22 (1 Jul 19), with summary and bill listings. Written by Robin Davis, NC NOW Vice President of Political Action and Lobbyist. Summary follows.
The legislature passed the budget on Thursday, June 27, and the governor vetoed it the next day. Governor Cooper stated that he did not veto the budget solely because it does not contain Medicaid expansion. He believes it also fails in the areas of education and the economy. He will offer a counter-proposal. For more information, see: https://governor.nc.gov/news/governor-cooper-vetoes-gop-budget-fails-public-education-health-care-and-economy. If an agreement between the governor and the legislative leaders cannot be reached before the end of the fiscal year, there will not be a government shut-down; everything will continue to be funded at its present level.
The budget also quadrupled support for Human Coalition, a Texas-based anti-abortion organization that runs a crisis pregnancy center in Raleigh whose main focus is to convince women to carry their pregnancies to term. The Raleigh News and Observer has done in-depth reporting on Human Coalition and other crisis pregnancy organizations that receive state funding: see https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article231719523.html
Go right to the NC NOW Legislative Update #21 at NC NOW Legislative Update #21.24Jun19.
Budget negotiations continue on two fronts, but there are no concrete results to report yet. In the legislature, the committee tasked with reconciling the House and Senate versions of the budget into one compromise document continues its work. The goal is for a new budget to be presented and passed before the beginning of the new fiscal year on July 1. Every indication is that this goal is likely to be met.
The biggest hurdle, however, is for the legislature to produce a budget that the Governor will sign. Here there is a stalemate. On Friday, June 21 Governor Cooper met face-to-face with House Speaker Tim Moore, Senate leader Phil Berger and Democratic leaders for nearly an hour. After the meeting, each party (the Governor’s office and the Republican leaders) issued press statements accusing the other of refusing to compromise. Continue reading