Missouri House panel OKs added funds for Medicaid drug costs

Mar 31, 2015

Credit j. stephenconn / Flickr

  Despite concerns from Republican lawmakers about Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon's withholding money from programs this year, most of his 2015 supplemental budget request is moving forward.

A Missouri House panel on Tuesday approved additional spending for 2015, including $120 million in general funds.

Republican lawmakers have previously criticized the request while the governor's office continues to withhold about $451 million from other priorities this year.

State budget director Linda Luebbering says the additional money is for bills that have to be paid.

About $82 million of that is for increased costs in the state's Medicaid pharmacy program, primarily from the high cost of providing new Hepatitis C drug Sovaldi.

The measure must be approved by the full House before going to the Senate.