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VOL. 129 | NO. 34 | Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Arkansas Lawmakers Considering 'Private Option' Bill

AP

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — House and Senate leaders are upbeat about the prospect of continuing Arkansas' compromise Medicaid expansion, as its funding bill nears its first floor vote of this year's session.

The House planned Tuesday to vote on the funding bill for the "private option" that was approved last year as an alternative to expanding Medicaid under the federal health law. Under the private option, Arkansas is using federal Medicaid funds to purchase private insurance for thousands of low-income residents.

The measure needs at least 75 votes in the 100-member House to advance to the Senate. Gov. Mike Beebe and Senate leaders say they believe they've secured the 27th vote needed in the 35-member Senate to keep the program alive, after negotiating changes to the state's workforce training program.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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