One of the major bills of the session is working its way to the House. Speaker of the House Rod Jetton (R-Marble Hill) is anxious to get started on the MO HealthNet program bill. Jetton says he worried the Senate wouldn’t be as quick in working on the bill. SB 577 is the Medicaid replacement program which Governor Blunt calls MO HealthNet. It needs to pass one more round of voting in the Senate to move to the House.
Jetton says the House plans two weeks of hearings on the measure in committee before it ever comes to the floor for debate. Differences then will have to be worked out between the Senate and House versions. Jetton says there will be differences. He had worried that the Senate would send him a bill late in the session and insist that it be approved without alterations. Once the House completes its work on the measure, the two chambers will have to iron out differences in a conference committee.
A big help to assuring passage as Jetton sees it is that the Senate accepted the House Medicaid fraud provision, a big contention between the two chambers last session. MO HealthNet is to replace the current Medicaid program, which is set to end next year.