Gov. Walker says he'll consider extending BadgerCare for those losing coverage

Gov. Walker says he'll consider extending BadgerCare for those losing coverage

U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin urges Walker to extend coverage through March 31st
GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV)--Wisconsinites losing BadgerCare could be without insurance January 1st if they’re unable to sign up for insurance through the Federal Exchange and pay their first premium by December 15st.

We don’t want to see people slip through the cracks and so we’re going to be spending the next couple of days talking to the White House and Obama Administration on what their alternative plans are,” said Governor Walker Wednesday.

In the budget approved last June, Governor Walker denied federal money under the Affordable Care Act which would have gone to help expand BadgerCare. 

However, the Governor did expand coverage for adults without dependent children who are below the poverty level and all children under 19. 

As a result, about 92,000 people will be notified this month that they will be losing BaderCare coverage.

That’s something Democratic U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin is urging Governor Walker to fix.

In a letter addressed to the Governor this week, Baldwin urged Walker to expand coverage for the individuals affected through March 31st, 2013. 

That’s when the Federal Exchange closes.

Baldwin wrote, “This solution would give the people we work for more time to enroll, gain access to ACA premium tax credits and cost-sharing subsidies, and eliminate the risk of coverage on January 1st.”

Walker told Local 5 News, extending coverage for those affected is something he’s considering and it wouldn’t cost the state any money, he said.

But the Governor said this has been and still remains a problem at the federal level.

“I would hope Sen. Baldwin would spend her time in Washington trying to get the administration to fix Obamacare.  That’s the reason this is a problem,” he said.

Walker said he hasn’t responded to Baldwin’s letter.

Baldwin's Office released this statement to Local 5 News in response to the Governor's comments, "We are pleased that Governor Walker is now listening to the solutions we are offering and making a promise that these Wisconsinites will not go without the health care coverage they need.”

Walker said he’ll make a decision on whether the state will expand coverage for those on BadgerCare through next March sometime in the near future.


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