Del. Price's Statement on the Passing of Budget/Medicaid Expansion
Delegate Marcia "Cia" Price's Full Statement on the Passing of the Budget
Just now, the Virginia General Assembly finally passed a budget. After six years, we were able to pass a fiscally and morally responsible budget that includes the expansion of Medicaid. Closing this coverage gap means a more healthy and productive Commonwealth, with about 400,000 more Virginians obtaining healthcare coverage, potentially 30,000 new jobs created, and millions of federal dollars coming into Virginia that we can use for our priorities like teacher raises, state employee raises, funding for higher education, support for local police departments, resources to fight substance abuse and addiction, mental health resources, funding to help expand the Port’s capacity, and more. Knowing that 13,000 of the newly eligible Virginians that may receive Medicaid coverage live in Hampton and Newport News, 4,800 of which live in the 95th District, this is a great day for the Peninsula and the Commonwealth.
I would have preferred expanding medicaid without the work requirement that was added by my colleagues across the aisle, however, I am hopeful that the silver lining of the unnecessary burden of this requirement will be an influx of workforce development initiatives and skill-building resources in areas that may not have previously had easy access.
Though the budget bills are not perfect documents, this is a budget for all Virginians. These bills are both huge steps to making sure that our Commonwealth is moving forward, in a healthy and productive direction, making Virginia the place for families, students, workers, businesses, and progress. The bills now head to Governor Northam, who has been a great leader in this fight for expansion.
We would not have obtained a bipartisan budget with medicaid expansion if it had not been for the tireless work and dedication of advocates and activists across the Commonwealth that came together, often across political, racial, and geographical boundaries, to work together for this important policy change. Count this as a huge win and stay engaged in your communities. Today, you have shown the nation another example that people-power works.
To learn more about what Medicaid Expansion is, please see my previous newsletter below with a breakdown. To view more on the budget documents, please visit: https://budget.lis.virginia.gov