Franz votes in favor of Right to Work

December 5, 2012

LANSING – The Michigan House on Tuesday voted to revise the eligibility requirements and payment schedule for the state’s Freedom to Work Medicaid program so people can maintain their health benefit coverage, state Rep. Ray Franz said.

Senate Bill 564 increases initial and ongoing eligibility income levels from 100 percent of the federal poverty level to 250 percent; removes the requirement that the individual meet Medicaid income, asset and eligibility rules; and uses the Medicare Part D Low Income Subsidy and Medicare Savings Program asset limit for eligibility guidelines.

“This bill allows developmentally disabled persons who are actively working and contributing to their communities to purchase their health coverage through Medicaid,” said Franz, R-Onekama. “Without these changes, they could be penalized with higher fees or even be kicked off the program when their income rises above the poverty level, and that would be counterproductive to encouraging people to become more self-sufficient.”

Under the current law, participants pay a tiered premium fee of $50, $190, $460, or $920 per month based on the person’s net earned income, up to 100 percent for individuals with more than $75,000 in net earned income.

SB 564 replaces the tiered fees for those with net earned income greater than 250 percent of the federal poverty level with a premium fee equal to 7.5 percent of earned and unearned income above 138 percent of the federal poverty level.

It also requires the state to exclude accumulated retirement assets from eligibility consideration for other Medicaid programs; allows for temporary breaks in employment for relocation purposes due to employment; and removes the requirement for the individual to report earned income changes that would result in a different premium within 30 days.

The legislation now returns to the Senate for enrollment and presentation to the governor.


Area Churches