Mills: More than 500 Mainers have coverage under expansion

By  | 

AUGUSTA, Maine (WMTW) Maine's new Democratic governor says more than 500 Mainers already have health care coverage under voter-approved Medicaid expansion.

Gov. Janet Mills said Thursday she'll work with lawmakers to fully fund expansion for at least 70,000 Mainers without tax increases in the two-year budget.

Former Republican Gov. Paul LePage blocked expansion over fiscal concerns, and Mills says thousands of people who applied for coverage received denials.

Mills on her first day signed an executive order to expand Medicaid that nearly three out of five voters demanded in 2017.

She cites an independent estimate suggesting Maine's expansion costs will total about $140 million from fiscal year 2019 through 2021.

Maine is awaiting approval of its Medicaid expansion plan in which the state will receive roughly $490 million in annual federal matching funds.