05/24/21 - Missouri Mondays - The Battle for Medicaid Expansion Begins--You Can Help!
The battle for Medicaid expansion has begun. “A lawsuit filed Thursday on behalf of three Missourians who would have qualified under expansion argued that there is no legal reason to treat people who become eligible July 1 differently from those who are currently eligible.” Missouri Independent
As we told you last week, Gov. Parson broke his promise to Missouri citizens and ignored a constitutional mandate to provide coverage to some 275,000 Missourians who do not earn enough to be covered by the ACA.
We cannot let our representatives ignore the will of the people and our constituion. Medical professionals, hospitals, as well as citizens all know that not only will expansion bring economic benefits, it will SAVE LIVES. And now IT’S THE LAW!
If you would like to volunteer or donate to help with this fight, you can do so through Missouri Healthcare for All.
The legislature also failed to pass the Federal Reimbursement Allowance (FRA), a tax paid by hospitals, nursing homes, and pharmacies that brings in $2.3 billion per year for Missouri’s Medicaid program. The tax accounts for nearly 25% of the Medicaid budget. Sen. Paul Wieland, R-Imperial offered an amendment that would ban certain types of contraceptives. Such language in the bill could threaten the entire Medicaid program. The tax expires September 30, and failure to pass it during the session will require a special session during the summer, which means more tax dollars spent needlessly.
TELL GOVERNOR PARSON TO VETO THE FOLLOWING BILLS:
Missouri Empowerment Scholarship Accounts Program (HCS HB 349):
Allows tax deductible donations to organizations that would pay for costs like private school tuition, tutoring, home schooling costs, transportation and more. “The bill may reduce the state’s general revenue by an estimated $50 million in its initial years, according to a fiscal analysis of the program.” Missouri Independent May 6
Second Amendment Preservation (HB 85):
Attempts to nullify federal gun laws in the state and forbids police to enforce them.
Police Oversight (SB 26):
Forbids police funds to be cut more than 12% over 5 years compared to other departments and forbids parole for persons who commit felonies against police and other emergency personnel. It also gives police officers who are under investigation certain rights that could make it more difficult to hold them accountable.
Covid Liability Protections (SB 51):
Shields businesses, health care providers, nursing homes and religious institutions from lawsuits relating to COVID-19 exposure.
Gov. Parson Office: (573) 751-3222
SOME BRIGHT SPOTS IN LEGISLATION THAT PASSED THIS SESSION
Regulations for Religious Boarding Schools (HB 557): We’re happy to report that Representative Keri Ingle’s bill regulating religious boarding schools passed the legislature with bi-partisan support and is headed to the governor’s office. The bill requires background checks for all employees, parental access to students, adherence to safety inspections, and other state oversight. After revelations by the Kansas City Star of decades of abuse and an investigation by the state Attorney General’s office led to numerous felony charges, Ingle worked with her colleagues to draft this important legislation. Thank you Representative Ingle!
Expands eligibility for a tax credit to assist with adoption costs, grants foster parents a tax credit, and increases the tax credits for contributions to domestic violence shelters and maternity homes.-These bills have been signed into law by the governor.
Requires that health insurance companies treat restrictions on mental health treatments no differently than rescrictions on physical health treatments.
Police Reform (SB 53):
Creates a use of force database, prohibits choke holds under most circumstances, requires additional background checks for police officers, provides no-cost menstrual products in jails and prisions, and allows community sentencing
Prescription Drug Monitoring (SB 63):
Creates a database to monitor the prescription and dispensing of opioids. Missouri is one of the last states in the nation to establish this program.
Wayfair/Income Tax Cuts (SB 153):
Taxes online sales, which will bring in new revenue. The bill also allows a state-based earned income credit. Unfortunately, Republicans did attach a tax rate cut if certain thresholds are met. They also increased the standard deduction for an expected revenue loss of $452 million.
Fuel Tax (SB 262):
Increases the state fuel tax from the current 17 cents per gallon to 29.5 cents a gallon gradually until 2025. A refund procedure is included.
SAVE THE DATE AND REGISTER FOR THESE UPCOMING EVENTS!
MISSOURI VOTER PROTECTION COALITION (MOVPC) MEETING
Mon May 24 at 10 AM
Join Missouri Voter Protection Coalition Zoom meeting with statewide advocates working to protect the right to vote in Missouri.
Text MOVPC to 66866 to sign up!
Vaccine Eligibility - SIGN UP TODAY!
ALL Missourians age 16 and up are now eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
Register here: https://covidvaccine.mo.gov/navigator/
You can also call the COVID-19 hotline at 877-435-8411 for registration assistance.
Missourians Vaccinated - as of Sun May 16 The New York Times
33% of Missourians are fully vaccinated
41% have received at least one dose.
Total COVID-19 Cases and Deaths in Missouri
509.520 confirmed cases and 9,006 deaths as of Sat May 22 MO Dept of Health and Senior Services
611,807 total cases and 9,572 deaths as of Sun May 23 The New York Times
THANK YOU! for answering the Missouri Mondays CALL TO ACTION!
Invite your friends and neighbors to join us and sign up for Indivisible Missouri and this Missouri Mondays email at indivisiblemo.com/signup