The increases in state GPR spending approved by the committee Tuesday evening include the following:
- $53.6 million to partially reflect the Fiscal Bureau’s estimate that the cost to maintain the program is likely to be significantly more than DHS projected (reflecting continued projections of enrollment increases);
- $14.4 million for SeniorCare – including $15 million more for the cost of removing the Governor’s proposal to require SeniorCare participants to enroll in and rely primarily on Medicare Part D, minus $555,000 because of a lower estimate of the base level cost of maintaining the program;
- $10 million to mitigate the increases in Family Care waiting lists; and
- $3.7 million to continue funding the Essential Access City Hospital (EACH) payments.
Advocacy groups were generally disappointed in the committee’s approval of most of the Governor’s cuts:
- A press release today from the Save BadgerCare Coalition expresses the group’s concerns about approving $466 million of unspecified cuts that can be made by DHS with little legislative oversight and which are likely to result “in a dramatic increase in the number of uninsured people in the state.”
- A release issued by AARP applauded the committee for rejecting the SeniorCare change, but expresses strong disappointment in the Family Care portion of the budget.
- A press release from the Survival Coalition of Wisconsin Disability Organizations says they were “stunned” by approval of the Family Care freeze, and they note that: “The Committee’s decision to freeze all long-term care programs, except nursing homes, will seriously undermine the cost effectiveness of the state’s long-term care system. The only entitlement the committee left intact is a right to live in an institution.”