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Medicaid expansion within reach — more signatures needed

Letter to the Editor

After months of hard work by dedicated volunteers across the state of Idaho, getting Medicaid expansion on the November ballot is within reach. Amazing progress has been made, but we’re in the final stretch to meet the April 30 deadline and we need one last push for signatures to qualify.

Expanding Medicaid coverage would provide health care to those 78,000 working people in Idaho who currently earn above the limits to qualify for Medicaid, but cannot afford to buy health insurance on the exchange.

Medicaid expansion will save nearly a million dollars in annual property and state taxes in Idaho County alone. Taking advantage of available federal funds would reduce the nearly $2 million in indigent care that is written off by Syringa and St. Mary’s hospitals annually, by 50 percent. Statewide, the savings would be $34 million annually.

We can be proud of the support we’ve been given in Idaho County, where we met the signature goal about a month early, and our legislative District 7 qualified soon after. But we still need a few thousand more signatures to meet the statewide target.

If you haven’t signed the petition, we now have a local signing station in Grangeville. We can thank the good folks at Northwest Insurance Agency, who have graciously agreed to make their office available to registered voters for signing petitions. The address is 101 W. Main Street. Hours are: M-F 9 a.m. to noon, and 1 to 5 p.m. Monday, April 30, is the last day to sign. Let’s do it!

Mary Ann High



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