Federal, state and county health care issues for the poor have been the major discussion in the news for several years now. I have tried to follow the issues and have participated in many county workshops and private citizen meetings on this controversial issue.
I have been against raising the half percent sales tax in Manatee County to fund the now depleted indigent health care fund, set aside to reimburse the hospitals and health-care providers for treating the uninsured. I have always felt that raising taxes hurts the poor and middle class.
Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that the federal government can operate Obamacare exchanges and give subsidies in all states, now that Florida has Florida Healthy Choices insurance up and running, now that Florida's budget totals $32.9 billion for health care, including funding Medicaid that covers 3,869,396 beneficiaries, now that Florida Kid Care is funded for 238,548 children, now that hospitals and physicians that care for the uninsured can be reimbursed with the $400 million that Florida set aside for the Low Income Pool, now that $28.6 million has been put into a grant program available for county health care clinics, I have decided that the federal and state governments have taken the lead in providing my taxpayer money for the health care for the indigent and low-income worker.
Manatee County commissioners do not need to be in the health care business. Local taxes should not be raised. Enough is enough. For more facts about Florida's budget, go to Rep. Greg Steube's website and see his newsletter.