Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Court Rules: Legislature Does Not Have To Fund AHCCCS for Poor Arizonans

Posted By on Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 3:48 PM

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Mark H. Brain has ruled in favor of the state in the lawsuit over whether state lawmakers are obligated to fund the state's AHCCCS program to provide health care for low-income Arizonans.

As we've reported before, attorney Tim Hogan of the Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest, had sued the state, saying that cutbacks in coverage for adults below the poverty line were illegal because the program had been expanded by voters, so it was subject to the provisions of the Voter Protection Act.

But Brain said that the law does not require the Legislature to fund the entire program. Brain's central takeaway:


The Legislature does not have an enforceable duty to fund Proposition 204, and the scope (and limits) of defendent Belach's duty is to continue to ensure that his agency is providing healthcare to the extent possible under Proposition 204 within the limits of the funding provided to him.

Dr. Eve Shapiro, who was one of the original supporters of Prop 204, tells The Range that Hogan will appeal.

Here's the ruling: Ruling_8-10-11.pdf

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