Thursday, April 18, 2013
House and Senate Adopt Haslam's Budget Plan
Gov. Bill Haslam's $32.8 billion budget proposal has been adopted by both chambers of the General Assembly. The Senate unanimously approved the spending plan on Wednesday afternoon, and the House later voted 83-14 to follow suit. The House vote came after the chamber rejected a Democratic proposal to include a provision to allow for the state to spend up to $3 billion in federal Medicaid money should the governor succeed in negotiating an expansion under the federal health care law. Republican House Finance Chairman Charles Sargent said Haslam's negotiations are unlikely to succeed within the next several months, and that the governor has pledged to seek legislative approval if any deal is struck. The bill goes back to the Senate to weigh minor changes made by the House.