Gov. Kate Brown unveiled a $23.6 billion budget proposal Wednesday that plugs holes in state health funding, seeks to gain ground in an ongoing housing crisis, expands access to voting and sets aside millions for challenging the policies of President Donald Trump.
An aging population, increased federal spending on health care for the poor, and a strongly growing regional economy all continue to work to the advantage of Oregon Health & Science University.
OHSU’s board voted unanimously to approve a $3 billion spending plan for the fiscal year that starts July 1, a 6 percent increase from 2018.
Democratic leaders praised aspects of the Oregon Health Authority budget that was approved by the budget committee on Tuesday but it goes to a floor vote on Thursday still lacking a critical Republican vote in the Oregon House of Representatives.
Oregon may not gain any savings if it tries to cut back on the popular Oregon Project Independence program, as many seniors in the program could end up routed into more expensive Medicaid programming without it.
A bipartisan pair of lawmakers plans to fight to keep a critical program for getting disabled, homeless people into housing after the initiative was defunded in the governor’s proposed budget, released earlier this month.
An independent consultant says that the Oregon Department of Human Services needs to raise rates for all types of foster care providers and develop an assessment tool to determine children’s needs when they enter the system.
The Oregon universal healthcare financing study bill cleared the top budget committee after a contentious hearing Monday, with $300,000 attached to design the best way of financing a universal healthcare system in Oregon.
Sen. Alan Bates, D-Medford, raised alarm bells that Department of Human Services spending is getting out of hand, and steps may need to be taken in the new budget and future budgets to tighten its belt and ensure that safety-net services are sustainable.
The Oregon economic forecast eased pressure on the budgets for health and human services, but other developments, such as the Supreme Court decision striking down public employee pension cuts, should force state lawmakers to be cautious in crafting the 2015-2017 budget, and fall short of the robu