Election Central

Medicaid expected to dominate Health & Welfare listening session Friday

The House and Senate Health & Welfare committees will take public testimony for 90 minutes, beginning at 8 a.m. Friday in the Lincoln Auditorium at the Capitol. Much of the conversation is expected to focus on Medicaid expansion.

Committee Chairmen Rep. Fred Wood, R-Burley, and Sen. Lee Heider, R-Twin Falls, are hosting the hearing for the second year. Testimony will be limited to three minutes and is expected to focus on any matter related to the committees’ jurisdiction. Written testimony is also accepted and appreciated by the committees.

Staff will arrive about 7 a.m. and pages will man 10 clipboards with sign-up sheets. Groups including Idaho Voices for Children suggest those wishing to testify arrive as early as 6 a.m., as lines often get long enough to exit the west end of the Capitol’s Garden Level.

Idaho Voices for Children is urging testimony in support of redesign and expansion of Medicaid to more than 100,000 moderate-income Idahoans.

Written testimony may be sent to the House committee secretary, Irene Moore, at hhel@house.idaho.gov and Senate committee secretary Linda Hamlet at shel@senate.idaho.gov .

The hearing also will be live-streamed on Idaho Public TV’s website.


Dan Popkey came to Idaho in 1984 to work as a police reporter. Since 1987, he has covered politics and has reported on 25 sessions of the Legislature. Dan has a bachelor's in political science from Santa Clara University and a master's in journalism from Columbia University. He was a Congressional Fellow of the American Political Science Association and a Journalism Fellow at the University of Michigan. A former page in the U.S. House of Representatives, he graduated Capitol Page High School in 1976. In 2007, he led the Statesman’s coverage of the Sen. Larry Craig sex scandal, which was one of three Pulitzer Prize finalists in breaking news. In 2003, he won the Ted M. Natt First Amendment award from the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association for coverage of University Place, the University of Idaho’s troubled real estate development in Boise. Dan helped start the community reading project "Big Read." He has two children in college and lives on the Boise Bench with an old gray cat.

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