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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

The budget news keeps getting worse



As a long day ended in the House, Health Care Council chairman Aaron Bean rounded up committee members and delivered the bad news: Budget chairmen Ray Sansom has told the health-care panel to find an additional $83-million in cuts on top of the $1-billion they've already eliminated from programs that help the poor, sick, elderly and disabled.

"We've already cut everything. Nursing homes are cut 10 percent. Hospitals are cut 10 percent," Bean told the group, meeting in the "bubble," a small conference room just off the House floor. "Everybody is screaming. So who do we go at again?"

The new cut in human services is too big to make by nipping and tucking around the edges of specific programs, Bean said. He and other lawmakers fear they will have to get the savings by limiting the eligibility for certain Medicaid services, meaning fewer people can get them.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 10:52am]


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