Making state dollars go farther

Sometimes in politics, the easiest solutions are the most elusive. That should not be the case with one part of the state budget discussions. When it comes to trying to leverage state tax dollars to maximize federal money at small state cost, there is no simpler discussion than putting in a meager $24 Million to increase the Medi-Cal reimbursement rates for our state’s safety net health care providers like Planned Parenthood and Neighborhood Health Clinics.
These providers are requesting the state increase their reimbursements for the first time in 20 years, although their work and responsibilities have expanded greatly over time and the costs to them have increased substantially as the sheer costs of delivering health care services—from staffing to pharmaceuticals, have shot through the ceiling during the past two decades.
But the common sense of it all should be the deal maker alone. For less than 1/10th of 1% of the state’s budget, we could see California get nine matching federal dollars for each state dollar spent, thus reducing the state’s financial burden, our healthcare safety net’s fraying edges and returning to Californians some of their hard-earned dollars. With Californians paying over $50 Billion more in taxes to the feds than we get back in services, this is one pretty inexpensive way to bring at least a few of those tax dollars home.
If you agree, it’s time to act. We urge you to go to our site at: and sign a letter to our state’s leadership urging them to put these dollars to work. We’ve been working hard to get a $24 million dollar increase into the Medi-Cal reimbursement rate as part of the current budget negotiations. After 20 years of no increases at all, NOW IS THE TIME. We are at the critical point in these negotiations when we must TAKE ACTION and INSIST that our state leaders—from the Governor to the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, Don Perata and Speaker of the Assembly, Fabian Nunez,—listen to us and help the state’s healthcare safety net providers care for the hundreds of thousands of people they serve—and have to turn away because they don’t have the financial resources to provide clinical care to those seeking it.
This is a solution that works. It’s time to bring those tax dollars back to California. The need is great and the opportunity is NOW. Easy solutions are hard to come by these days. Let’s not let them drop the ball on this one.
Help us help them make it happen.