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    Governor Rick Snyder released his report "Executive Budget Fiscal Years 2012 and 2013" on Thursday, February 17, 2011. The budget presented is a balanced, two-year spending plan with recommended FY 2012 and FY 2013. On his budget proposal for the Department of Human Services, the Governor recommended total funding of $6.9 billion, of which $1.1billion would be general fund for fiscal year 2012. For fiscal year 2013, he recommended total funding of $6.9 billion, of which $1.2 billion would be general fund.

    . The proposal would appropriate over $899.4 million ($382.1 million general fund) in Michigan's child welfare system. These funds would enhance child welfare services for abused and neglected children and support staff for child protective services. With $206.8 million ($91.9 million general fund) would be supported to the foster care payment for 7,200 children in out-of-home care. With funding level of $228.7 million ($81.3 million general fund), 28,200 adopted children would receive adoption subsidies.

    The proposal would appropriate over 2 million people receive Food Assistance, more than doubled caseload since 2004, funded with $3.6 billion in federal funds. The Governor's budget would replace federal stimulus funds to support Michigan's safety-net programs.

    In the Income Assistance Programs, the proposal would appropriate a 48 months lifetime limit for Family Independence Programs recipients. $172 million would be funded to provide safe, high quality child day are for 27,000 low-income families.

    For the Department of Community Health, the Governor's proposed budget for fiscal year 2012 recommends total funding of $14 billion, of which $2.7 billion would be general fund. The recommendation for fiscal year 2013 is $14.4 billion, of which $2.9 billion would be general fund.

    In Medical Services, the proposal recommended $9.7 billion ($1.2 billion general fund) for medical services and $2.4 billion ($388.5 million general fund) for the long term care portion of the Medicaid program, which makes up 87% of the DCH budget. From 1980 to 2000, Medicaid caseload increased by 15% and from 2000 to 2012, Medicaid caseload would increase by 79%, which means one out of every five Michigan residents would receive health care services. In the Governor's proposal, the Medicaid eligibility would maintained and provider reimbursement rates would supported without reductions. The health care proposal was consist with statements Snyder made on the governor campaign last year when he indicated an understanding that "years of rate cuts and freezes have created access problems for insured patients and passed along unnecessary burden to taxpayers."

    The proposal would appropriate $437.5 million ($180.9 million general fund) would be added to the Medicaid budget for increases in the number of Medicaid recipients and increased utilization of services. $509.4 million (172.8 million general fund) would be invested in community-based long term care services. The proposal would appropriate $138 million ($34 million general fund) would be allocated to fund the Adult Benefits Waiver program that provides basic health coverage to low-income childless adults. $3 billion are funded in mental health services including $2.7 billion to provide community mental health services, and $262 million to fund state operated psychiatric hospitals and centers.

    The proposal would appropriate $645.1 million ($75.6 million general fund) in other medical services, program such as health promotion, disease prevention and services to senior citizens and families, including $37.4 million ($32.3 million general fund) in grants to local public health departments. Children's Special Health Care Services would be support with $295.2 million ($124.1 million general fund) to provide medical care and treatment for children with special health care needs.

    After the proposal released, social service advocates had strong reactions. "We agree with Governor Snyder's effort to balance the budget with structural, long term solutions. We also support a balanced approach that includes eliminating tax loopholes that do not generate jobs or stimulate the economy." Karen Schrock, President and CEO from Adult Well-Being Services said, "Everyone should pay their fair share in taxes to maintain government that is not only by the people but for the people. We look forward to learning more about the Governor's proposed budget to make sure that basic needs, mental health, developmental disability and senior services are protected for our most vulnerable citizens." (Cranson)

    The Governor's proposed a health care insurance claims assessment of one percent applied to all health insurers in the state. The new claim assessment would replace the existing use tax on Medicaid health maintenance organizations and support Medicaid provider reimbursement rates and services, by raising $400 million in revenue. "A surprise to health care businesses is the new 1 percent insurance claims tax, which could cost hospitals millions of dollars." said Peter Schonfeld, senior vice president of policy and data services at the Michigan Health and Hospital Association, "Health care will pay the largest chunk of that tax because we are one of the state's largest employers." (Greene)

    Sources:

    Executive Budget FY 2012 and FY 2013

    Cranson, Jeff (February 17, 2011). Social Service Advocates Have Strong Reactions to Gov. Rick Snyder's Call for Funding Cuts The Grand Rapids Press, Retrieved February 28, 2011, from http://www.mlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2011/02/social_service_advocates_have.html

    Greene, Jay (February 18, 2011). Medicaid Payments Spared, But Health Care Providers Still Feel Snyder's Budget Cuts, Crain's Detroit Business, Retrieved February 28, 2011, from http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20110218/FREE/110219869/medicaid-payments-spared-but-health-care-providers-still-feel-snyders-budget-cuts

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