From: Heidi
To: Legislative Fiscal Analyst Office Dropbox,
Subject: UT Access+ testimony
Date: Fri Oct 09 16:31:19 MDT 2015
Body:
Dear committee members, I was disappointed after showing up an hour before the proceedings and signing up as one of the first on the sign up sheet to be denied the opportunity to speak publicly. I stayed for the entirety of the meeting and made work and childcare arrangements to do so. Awarding many citizens a speaking opportunity who showed up late was in poor judgment and unfair. I hope my private remarks receive attention even if the public never has the chance to receive my input. To be clear, this is Obamacare/ACA masquerading as Healthy Utah, now disguised as Access Plus. No matter how many costume changes occur, Medicaid expansion does not suit Utah. Medicaid expansion is unsustainable. Sixteen out of twenty states that adopted Medicaid expansion are currently facing budget shortfalls. Utah should not be anxious to follow that downhill path. A state cannot budget for a program that mandates no caps on enrollment. This is not merely a Cadillac program, it's a Lamborghini. Medicaid expansion is unconscionable. One if its flaws is that it is based on patients income not assets. Its recipients may also qualify for other redundant aid. In theory, there could be wealthy individuals receiving benefits. With the necessity of compliance to federal law, any work requirements or proof of active employment searches of these able-bodied recipients is expressly prohibited. This behavior, void of responsibility is not deserving of state endorsement. This big government program primarily serves able-bodied childless adults. This misplaced priority essentially moves the less needy group to the front of the line ahead of the most vulnerable population. Medicaid expansion is indefensible. Any money/funds the state receives will come from a federal government more than eighteen trillion dollars in debt. Utah cannot sensibly expect an entity unable to pay its own bills to be able to cover ours. Future costs will bankrupt our state. Just last year alone, one hundred eight million dollars in requests were denied. Make no mistake, government borrowing is deferred taxation imposed on future generations. My children who are not yet old enough to vote will unfairly be excluded from voting on this tax which they will be forced to bear. Due to the open-ended nature of enrollment, of necessity, there will be automatic tax increases with no relief to satiate the beast. Remember, historically, the federal government does a better job issuing mandates than it ever has enforcing/enacting its programs. When was the last time you can recall the national government managing its money/programs better than the states? I can't recall an incident either. We are wise enough to know that "free" money is never free. Experience and common sense have verified this truth. We cannot afford to partake of this federally proffered free meal. If I were a doctor I'd say the prognosis of Access Plus is acute myopia with eventual asphyxiation. In conclusion, please abandon this trap of financial servitude. Think of the consequences of letting this Trojan horse enter Utah. I am confident that Utah is capable of crafting a plan on its own that is both sustainable and charitable. With innovation and resolve, we can create boundaries that will symbiotically protect the present and future health of the state and assist all of its residents. Thanks for your profound consideration, Heidi Balderree