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Ticket to Work program works its way through the Assembly

March 1, 2006
By: Andrea Ramey
State Capital Bureau

The once cut Ticket to Work program, which allows disabled Missourians to work and collect state health insurance, is on its way to being reinstated.

Andrea Ramey tells us why Democrats aren't happy with the bill.

Story:
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OutCue: SOC

Democrats wanted to amend the bill to lower the premium from seven and a half percent to four percent.

Actuality:
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OutCue:
Contents: "You can't put a price on human compassion. When you go back to your districts, if you vote against this amendment, make sure you tell your senior citizens and your people who are disabled that you voted to have a higher premium than you yourself have."

The amendment to the bill did not pass.

Republican Representative Charles Portwood says lawmakers will still pay a higher premium at twenty percent.

The agency in charge of state employees' health insurance couldn't confirm either the Democrats' or the Republicans' figures, saying there are many ways to calculate an average.

From the state Capitol, I'm Andrea Ramey.

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Democrats say the program is an inadequate attempt to address the Medicaid cuts made last session.

Republican Representative Charles Portwood says Ticket to Work was getting out of control.

Actuality:
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OutCue:
Contents: "We took a program that was literally bankrupting the state, costing us a quarter of a billion dollars, and we had to get rid of it last year. This year we created a program that meets those needs and now it's going to cover 32-hundred people who work and who are disabled."

Democrats also wanted to lower the premium but were defeated.

From the state Capitol, I'm Andrea Ramey.