Is Medicaid expansion a good idea in South Dakota? Legislators discussed the topic at a 'Legislative Crackerbarrel.'
Governor Dennis Daugaard, at this time, does not support expanding medicaid. Legislators at Saturday's session, like Senator Bruce Rampelberg, District 30 (R), say they want to see what happens with Obamacare first, and like Daugaard has said in the past, won't move too fast into uncharted territory.
However, some say there aren't too many changes these legislators can make to Medicaid eligibility. "At the end of the day, most of the decisions for Medicaid eligibility come from the federal government,"said Senator Craig Tieszen, District 34 (R). "As much as we would like to adapt them to South Dakota's specific situation, we are mostly regulated to following federal regulations for Medicaid eligibility and I think that adds to our frustrations."
Senator Tieszen also touched on the pine beetle problem in the Black Hills. He says we didn't receive the same amount of funding for the year 2014 to fight the beetles.
Because of that, a bill is being drafted that would help fight the beetles at the same level as last year.