Tribpedia: Medicaid

Deuell: Make Cuts, but Raise Taxes Too

State Sen. Robert Deuell, R-Greenville, would rather raise taxes a little bit than make the cuts lawmakers are considering now, he told the Tribune this evening. Deuell has been a proponent of a 10-cent increase in gasoline taxes for some time — since before his Republican primary and general election victories last year — and said he would support a broader sales tax too. "We're the 45th-lowest tax state," he said. "I'm not chomping at the bit to be number 44, but we're a low-tax state and we've got people in need."

Liveblog: Reform or Bust?

We liveblogged this morning from the Austin Club, where the subject of today's TribLive was health care: the costs — and solutions — for Medicaid, payment reform in Texas vs. the federal health overhaul, and what kind of hit Texas' neediest patients will take. 

Rainy Day Fund: Is it Drizzling Out — or Pouring?

Texas, like many other states, is proposing billions of dollars in cuts to help close a budget gap. But as Ben Philpott of KUT News and the Tribune reports, one thing Texas has that nobody else does is $9 billion in a piggy bank called the Rainy Day Fund — and lawmakers are divided over whether to crack it open.

Battle Over Rainy Day Fund Heating Up

Texas, like many other states, is proposing billions of dollars in cuts to help close a budget gap. But as Ben Philpott of KUT News and the Tribune reports, one thing Texas has that nobody else does is $9 billion in a piggy bank called the Rainy Day Fund — and lawmakers are divided over whether to crack it open.

Sen. Jane Nelson and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst introduce legislation designed to improve Texas health care.
Sen. Jane Nelson and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst introduce legislation designed to improve Texas health care.

Dewhurst, Nelson Unveil Health Care Bills

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Grapevine, introduced two bills Wednesday they believe will save the state money by increasing "healthy patient outcomes."

Budget Cuts Trickle Down to Local Governments

One lawmaker has proposed a constitutional amendment blocking lawmakers from passing so-called unfunded mandates on to local governments. But as Ben Philpott of KUT News and the Tribune reports, cities and counties worry the costs will come anyway.

Gov. Rick Perry delivering his State of the State address on Feb. 8, 2011
Gov. Rick Perry delivering his State of the State address on Feb. 8, 2011

Rick Perry at CPAC: Local Government Governs Best

In a rock concert-like setting, at times reaching Howard Dean-like volumes, Gov. Rick Perry used his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington to deliver his resounding message: The government closest to the people is the one that governs best.

Dr. Xavier Muñoz treats a patient in El Paso. Muñoz agreed to treat low-income, underinsured patients in return for having his medical school bill repaid — a program that could be eliminated through state budget cuts.
Dr. Xavier Muñoz treats a patient in El Paso. Muñoz agreed to treat low-income, underinsured patients in return for having his medical school bill repaid — a program that could be eliminated through state budget cuts.

Doctor Loan Repayment Deal in Jeopardy

More than 100 Texas doctors made a deal with the state: For four years, they would practice in underserved communities and treat the neediest patients — in return for having their med school debt forgiven. But now state officials may be backing down from their side of the bargain. 

Bill Hammond is the CEO of the Texas Association of Business.
Bill Hammond is the CEO of the Texas Association of Business.

Hammond: No Time to Be Penny-Wise, Pound-Foolish

We must continue to fight to ensure that we implement cost-saving reforms that reflect Texas' commitment to prosperity and to economic growth. But our current budget shortfall isn't a time to be penny-wise and pound-foolish.

Former state Rep. Talmadge Heflin is the director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Fiscal Policy.
Former state Rep. Talmadge Heflin is the director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Fiscal Policy.

Heflin: Most Sensible Solution Is Reduced Spending

More money is not the answer to our current woes. Just as anyone managing a household budget knows, when a family’s expenses grow beyond its income, the solution is to cut back — particularly if its spending habits resemble the state's.

Pretty Good Forecasting

The keepers of numbers over in the LBJ Building, north of the Capitol, have confirmed to lawmakers what they warned them about in 2006: The legislation that cut local school property taxes and revised the state's corporate franchise tax didn't balance, to the tune of $10 billion a biennium.