Here’s what’s coming in the 2017 legislative session.
Like many other states, Georgia levies a provider fee, more commonly known as a “bed tax” on its hospitals. However, this tax is set to expire midway through 2017, and the debate about whether to renew it is expected to be one of the main issues of the legislative session, which began on Monday, Jan. 9.
The tax—1.45 percent on the net profits of hospitals, excluding critical-access, psychiatric, and state-owned hospitals—generates about $280 million per year, which Georgia then uses to obtain almost $600 million in matching federal Medicaid funds, reports STAT News. This process was established in 2013, when lawmakers voted to approve the tax hike to plug a potential $700 million gap in the state healthcare budget.
What else is on the table over the next three months? Without concrete plans for what the new administration and new Congress will do in Washington, there is some uncertainty for Georgia lawmakers, but The Macon Telegraph outlined some of the priorities:
- State healthcare policy, pending moves in Washington surrounding the Affordable Care Act
- Dealing with failing schools and education funding
- Cutting red tape on businesses
NFIB/GA will keep you updated on the latest legislative taken that impacts you and your business.