Commissioners to testify in Columbus about loss of Medicaid funds

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – State lawmakers in Columbus are likely to get quite an earful on Wednesday from a group of local commissioners.

Tuesday morning, Mahoning County Commissioners held a staff meeting to go over their plans. They, along with their counterparts from Trumbull County, will be testifying in front of the finance committees of both the Ohio House and Senate.

The commissioners are upset with plans to cut away the $166 million in sales tax collected across the state by Medicaid Managed Care programs as part of Governor John Kasich’s next biennium budget.

“We need stability, you know. We need to look at something that’s long-term, not something that’s gonna drop off in two years and then we’re stuck with, ‘Where do you get $4 to $5 million?” said Mahoning County Commissioner Carol Righetti.

Commissioners say they’re already struggling to make up for the loss of Local Government Funds that have been reduced in recent state budgets. They said us they simply can’t afford to lose millions more.

“This affects the constituency that we represent. It affects the constituency that the state representatives and state senators represent. You start cutting money and you start gutting your local governments. What are we gonna do when we tell people there’s no money to provide service?” said Commissioner Anthony Traficanti.