House Speaker Billy McCoy said today he plans to send members of his chamber home as an impasse over Medicaid funding continues.
In a news release issued on the seventh day of a special legislative session, McCoy, D-Rienzi, said, “Unless there is some indication that the governor and lieutenant governor are willing to compromise, then I’m going to recommend to the House that we go home and stop wasting taxpayers’ money.”
The session is in its third week and has cost taxpayers $250,011, with three of 11 issues having been resolved.
The biggest breakdown has been over how to provide long-term funding for Medicaid, the health insurance program that serves hundreds of thousands of Mississippians.
A hospital tax plan backed by Republican Gov. Haley Barbour overwhelmingly cleared the Senate but failed in the Democrat-controlled House. Cigarette and liquor tax hikes are supported by House Democrats, but key committee chairmen have blocked that plan from being considered by the Senate.
The cigarette and liquor tax hike has also failed to clear the House chamber.