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Englin and Hope question McDonnell's stance on Medicaid funds and urge Congress to act Print

State Delegates note that Governor's change of position puts Virginia jobs at risk

06.18.2010 Arlington - Governor Robert F. McDonnell told reporters Monday that he no longer plans to ask Congress to support an enhanced federal match for Medicaid benefits to the states unless the funds are offset, citing concerns about the deficit. Yet he signed a letter in February, along with 46 other governors, indicating that an extension of these funds, known as FMAP, "would greatly assist us in maintaining services and further stabilizing the economy."

"The General Assembly didn't write such conditions for these Medicaid funds in Virginia's budget, and Governor McDonnell didn't propose such conditions before he signed the budget in April," said Delegate Patrick Hope (D-47). "When exactly did the federal deficit become a revelation to the Governor? Why is he changing his position and putting Virginia jobs and Virginia citizens at risk?"

"Congress is getting ready to vote on this issue. With Virginia preparing cut services to thousands of our most vulnerable citizens because Congress has yet to approve this money, it's irresponsible for Governor McDonnell to send a message that this money is no longer necessary," said Delegate David Englin (D-45). "We urge Governor McDonnell to stick with his February position and join us in calling on Congress to approve this money now to protect Virginia jobs and Virginia citizens."

Meanwhile, Congress adjourned today without approving these funds, which means another week will go by without providing this critical funding to the states.

"Congress needs to understand the consequences of inaction," said Hope. "Hundreds of thousands of Virginians are depending on the funding these services provide; thousands of jobs in the health care sector are at stake."

Delegate Patrick Hope is serving his first term in the Virginia House of Delegates, where he represents the 47th District in Arlington County. He serves on the Courts of Justice Committee and the Health, Welfare, and Institutions Committee.

Delegate David Englin is Vice Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus and is serving his third term in the Virginia House of Delegates, where he represents the 45th District, which includes parts of the City of Alexandria, Fairfax County, and Arlington County. He serves on the Finance Committee, the Health, Welfare, and Institutions Committee, and the Agriculture, Chesapeake, and Natural Resources Committee.


Media Contacts:

Delegate David Englin, 703-549-3203

Delegate Patrick Hope, 703-486-1010