Press Release from Gov.-Elect Bill Haslam, Jan. 7, 2011:
Governor-elect to Federal Government: “We Must Have Flexibility to Manage Costs”
NASHVILLE – Tennessee Governor-elect Bill Haslam today released a statement regarding a letter he signed along with 32 other Republican governors and governors-elect formally asking the federal government to remove certain restrictions in order to allow more flexibility in managing the states’ Medicaid programs.
“As governor, I will be responsible for putting together a very difficult budget during these tough economic times, and TennCare comprises more than a fifth of the overall budget,” Haslam said. “We must have more flexibility in order to manage costs and run the program successfully.”
The letter specifically addressed the Maintenance of Effort (MOE) provisions in both the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), which severely limit states’ ability to adapt to changing populations or economic conditions.
“TennCare is already facing a number of budget challenges related to the large amount of reductions that have been delayed in the current year’s budget with one-time money,” said Haslam. “That combined with the budgetary burden the federal government is putting on the states through the federal Affordable Care Act creates a serious issue for Tennessee.
“I want TennCare to be an effective program that provides access to quality healthcare for our neediest citizens while keeping costs in line, but I – and every other governor – need more flexibility from the federal government in order to do so.”
For a copy of the letter, click here.