A human services panel has delayed a decision on whether to cut state health care coverage for about four thousand Iowans who receive help for overwhelming medical bills. The money for those “medically needy” is in jeopardy due to state budget cuts to the Department of Human Services. D-H-S Director Jessie Rasmussen says the Governor plans to propose legislation in January to cover the budget cut.Rasmussen says the four thousand make too much money to qualify for Medicaid, but still need help.The Democrat Governor’s proposal involves using money from a trust fund for seniors, from the tobacco settlement and other funds. House Speaker Brent Siegrist, a republican from Council Bluffs, says the governor’s only postponing the inevitable.Siegrist says even if the state finds 18-million dollars to cover Medicaid cuts, they’ll still be short another 25-million dollars as new people enroll.Siegrist says he suspects the governor is dragging his feet on the issue so the governor can blame the legislature if the money doesn’t materialize. Siegrist says no one wants to make the cuts, but he says the longer the state waits, the more painful the cuts will be.
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