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Heath care advocate talks Medicaid expansion in Pocatello

Health care advocate Stephen Weeg spoke to Idahoans at the Pocatello Elks Lodge Wednesday.

According to Weeg, “just because you pass the initiative and it’s law doesn’t mean it goes into effect without funding or rules.”

One of the purposes of the event was for Weeg to explain what the next steps are before the expansion is finalized.

“Well first the legislators have to fund it,” Weeg said. “The new governor’s proposed coming up with money out of the millennium fund, which is a tobacco tax settlement from years ago.”

Weeg said that money may also come from unused funds in the state Health and Welfare and Corrections budgets.

The other step is figuring out if there will be any type of requirements to be eligible.

“Do they do it simply, with a light touch of government,” Weeg asked. “Or do they put work requirements or other kinds of requirements around this population?”

Seeing if it passes the way voters passed it is currently the “big question.”

Weeg says that, “they will do something.” Though, “it’ll be a challenge to keep it simple.”

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