Governor Terry McAuliffe's Budget Impasse
On the fourth day of Governor Terry McAuliffe's budget impasse, Virginia's third largest county joined a growing chorus of local governments calling on the Governor to separate Medicaid expansion from the budget debate and pass a clean budget.
Loudoun County Board of Supervisors Chairman Scott York sent a letter to Governor Terry McAuliffe urging the Governor to "separate [Medicaid expansion] from the entire state budget and deal with it separately at another time."
For the full text of the letter, click here.
"Without timely action on the state budget by both the state legislative and executive branches, local government budget decision-making is nearly impossible to finalize, and the threat of a July 1 shutdown of nonessential state operations [is] a real possibility. Furthermore, the practice of passing additional state-level responsibilities and commitments to localities continues to increase to the point where many localities are forced to choose between annual real estate tax increases or reducing services required to serve its citizens.
We respectfully request that you not allow any single issue, including consideration of Medicaid expansion, to prevent you from working with the General Assembly to enact a state budget. Specifically, if the Medicaid issue cannot be resolved at the conclusion of this session as scheduled, then the issue should be dropped and the entire state budget should move forward and be adopted. Therefore, we request that you separate this particular issue from the entire state budget and deal with it separately at another time."
Loudoun County joins a growing chorus of local governments urging the Governor to separate the issue of Medicaid expansion from the budget.
The City of Virginia Beach passed a resolution urging the Governor to "separate the issue of Medicaid expansion from the budget so that a budget may be promptly adopted by the General Assembly."
New Kent County, Shenandoah County and the City of Colonial Heights have all adopted similar resolutions.
From across the Commonwealth, the message being sent to the Governor is loud and clear: Virginia should pass a clean budget and then consider the issue of Medicaid expansion separately.
Click here to sign a petition telling Gov. Terry McAuliffe to drop his demands for Obamacare and let Virginia pass a clean budget
The Governor and his allies in the State Senate are holding the budget hostage, refusing to pass a budget unless Virginia expands Obamacare. In other words, they're willing to shut down state government in order to get what they want.
If you think this is political spin, click here... and here... and here. Proponents of Medicaid expansion are readily admitting they're using the budget as leverage and do not intend to back down.
The great irony is that last year, then candidate McAuliffe decried Republicans in Washington for doing the exact same thing.
Ahead of the federal government shutdown, McAuliffe even sent a letter to the Virginia Congressional Delegation urging them "to stop using the threat of a government shutdown as a bargaining chip in other negotiations, including over the health care law."