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Health and Medicine

Ohio group collecting signatures for Medicaid expansion is weighing options
Supporters are not counting on the state Controlling Board to expand Medicaid on Monday

Jo Ingles
In The Region:
The group that’s been gathering petition signatures to put Medicaid expansion on the ballot next year isn’t counting on a legislative panel to decide the issue once and for all Monday.

The Ohio Controlling Board is set to consider whether to allow the state to take in $2.5 billion in federal money over the next two years that would be used to expand the Medicaid program.

But Jon Allison with the coalition that’s pushing for expansion and working on getting the issue on the November 2014 ballot says even if that happens, legal challenges that could be waged by opponents would be a consideration for his group.
Group collecting signatures for Medicaid expansion weighing options

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"It does add a layer of complexity when considering exactly what to do with that ballot issue and I can’t really speculate yet but I think it’s fair to acknowledge that if this matter ends up in litigation that will weigh into whether or not the ballot issue needs to go forward."

Republican House Speaker Bill Batchelder says he thinks it’s possible a lawsuit might be waged over the way in which Medicaid is expanded. He says he does not like the way the Controlling Board is often used as a vehicle to get around the will of the Legislature, but notes it has been used before by Republicans and Democrats.
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