The LAO alternative…

The Legislative Analyst’s Office has put out their analysis of the state budget.

The headline is their bigget budget deficit number: $16 billion.

The LAO also put out an alternative budget proposal, which doesn’t do “across-the-board” cuts but targets specific areas, and also raised some revenue. But it’s not pretty in terms of cuts to health and other vital services.

On health care, the LAO’s recommendation includes:
* A cut to public hospitals, redirecting funds to other state health programs
* Reinstatement of quarterly status reporting, and elimination continuous eligibility for children
* Discontinuation of payments for Medicare Part B premiums for those with shares of cost
* Additional cuts to the Healthy Families program, including a rate reduction, a cap on annual dental benefits, and increases in premiums and co–pays.

On the flip side, the LAO did not include a 10 percent rate reduction to Medi–Cal providers “because our analysis indicates that it could severely limit the access of Medi–Cal beneficiaries to providers.” However, that’s the cut that the Legislature and Governor have already passed.

Health Access California promotes quality, affordable health care for all Californians.
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