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Just Like Ronnie

The Orlando Sentinel reports on one of the many ways the Florida legislature is emulating the Reagan process for cutting budgets – send the bill to someone else: Counties will have to pay millions in disputed Medicaid bills

Since 1991, the state has charged for certain Medicaid services provided to county residents. Counties are required to reimburse the state for 35 percent of the cost of hospital stays of 11 to 45 days, except for pregnant women and children, and $55 a month for each Medicaid patient in a nursing home.

But counties have found numerous incidents of errors in the billing process, administered by the state Agency for Health Care Administration.

Orange County, for example, had its bills audited and found that bills totaling $3.5 million sent by the state were duplicates. It also found $2 million worth of billings for Medicaid recipients who are not Florida residents.

Reagan did it to the states, the state is doing it to the counties. What makes this especially egregious is that the state legislature keeps limiting the ability of the counties and local governments to raise revenue by putting referenda on the ballot that people approve because ‘they don’t want higher taxes’.

The state is saying that counties have to pay whatever the state bills, and can’t contest the charges. It is a raid on the counties to balance the state budget, because the legislature has already jacked up every fee the state charges.