SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Feb. 11, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — Utah Governor Gary Herbert has signed State Bill 96 into law despite public protests against the bill, designed to replace voter-backed Proposition 3, which was intended to expand Medicaid eligibility.
SB 96 was drafted by lawmakers who believe Prop 3 was too expensive. It places higher limits on eligibility, disqualifying many who would have qualified under the voter-approved proposition.
“Moments ago, I signed SB 96 into law,” Herbert’s statement on Twitter says. “This bill balances Utah’s sense of compassion and frugality. It provides quality coverage to the same population covered by Proposition 3 in a meaningful, humane and sustainable way.”
“It is now time to set aside differences and move forward to get those in greatest need enrolled on Medicaid and on the federal health care exchanges,” Herbert says in a follow-up tweet.
The replacement bill was the subject of protests outside the State Capitol. Those who opposed it also used social media to organize letter-writing campaigns and phone calls to state representatives.
Utah Decides Healthcare, which sponsored Prop 3, issued a statement:
“This is a dark day for democracy in Utah. State legislators turned their backs on voters and on families in need. This bill leaves billions of our tax dollars in Washington and cuts healthcare for tens-of-thousands of Utahns. While special interests and politicians celebrate the success of their backroom deal, Utah families will be up late tonight knowing they just lost the ability to afford lifesaving care.”