State Treasurer John Kennedy joins us this morning to discuss the recent news of a budget surplus. Governor Bobby Jindal's administration and the Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols say the state has $179 million surplus, but State Treasurer John Kennedy disagrees. For one thing, Kennedy wonders where this money came from; according to his numbers, the state in fact should have a $41 million deficit at the moment. Kennedy says he "hopes we have a surplus," but fears the state is pretending we do.
Also, Andrew Muhl the Advocacy Director for Louisiana AARP is with us for the last segment today to discuss AARP's interest in Amendments I and II which are on the upcoming November 4th ballot, and why the AARP wants folks to vote 'No'. Andrew talks about how Amendments I & II are being advertised as a "package" but are in fact very different. He says Amendment I will make it harder for seniors and people with disabilities to remain in their own home and receive care there; and how Amendment II protects powerful companies from cuts which the AARP feels the state should not be doing.
- Amendment I: Do you support an amendment to prohibit monies in the Medicaid Trust Fund for the Elderly from being used or appropriated for other purposes when adjustments are made to eliminate a state deficit?
- Amendment II: Do you support an amendment to create the Hospital Stabilization Fund to stabilize and protect Medicaid reimbursements for health care services by depositing assessments paid by hospitals, as authorized by the legislature, into a fund to support Louisiana hospital reimbursement?