Arkansas Lawmakers Approve Contract on Medicaid


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) – Arkansas lawmakers have approved a $220,000 contract with a consultant to review Medicaid and other public assistance programs, despite objections from Democrats over the way the agreement was handled.

The Joint Budget Committee on Tuesday approved a four-month contract with the Alexander Group, LLC to review Medicaid, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and child care assistance. It was approved on a 30-6 vote.

The firm is headed by Gary D. Alexander, who ran the Medicaid program in Rhode Island.

The contract's approval comes as lawmakers consider an alternate to Medicaid expansion that would allow the state to use federal funds to purchase private insurance for the newly eligible.

Democrats on the panel said they were concerned the contract was approved without issuing a request for proposals.

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