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Government & Politics

Ohio Budget Vote Expected Today

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KAREN KASLER
/
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

With just two days to go before the budget is required to be signed by the governor, state lawmakers will cast their votes on it today on the document that was worked out in all day negotiations with the conference committee.

“With four affirmative votes, two negative votes, Amended Substitute House Bill 49 is favorably reported.”

Conference Committee chair Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell) noted the party line vote for the budget, which includes a freeze on enrollments in Medicaid expansion next year. Gov. John Kasich’s Office of Health Transformation says up to half a million people could lose coverage. He’s touted Medicaid expansion as a tool to fight the opioid crisis, and though there’s an exemption for the mentally ill and drug addicted, that provision is considered a likely veto target. The budget had to be trimmed because of a projected billion dollar shortfall. And the budget also includes new options for graduation for the class of 2018 and a sales tax holiday in August.