The Latest: Maine governor touts Medicaid expansion
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The Latest: Maine governor touts Medicaid expansion

AUGUSTA, Maine — The Latest on the Maine governor’s budget address (all times local):

7:10 p.m.

Maine Democratic Gov. Janet Mills says her Medicaid expansion proposal is going to spur economic growth in addition to providing health care for thousands more Mainers.

Mills said Monday evening that her plan to expand Medicaid will provide more money to hospitals, which will be able to create more jobs. She called it the “bargain of the century.”

Mills also is addressing the opioid crisis.

Mills insists her budget is “fiscally responsible and pragmatic” enough to protect Maine’s rainy day fund and weather an economic downturn. She has said she’s committed to no tax increases.

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11:17 a.m.

Maine’s Democratic governor is ready to rally support for her two-year, $8 billion budget proposal, which includes funding for Medicaid expansion.

Gov. Janet Mills, buoyed by Democratic control of the House and Senate, wants to move forward on campaign promises to address health care access, the opioid crisis, education funding and economic development.

Mills said her budget is “fiscally responsible and pragmatic” enough to protect Maine’s rainy day fund and weather an economic downturn. She said she’s committed to no tax increases.

She’ll be addressing a joint session of the Legislature on Monday night.

Her proposals gained some support from top Democratic lawmakers. But Republican leaders say the budget is too big, noting former Gov. Paul LePage originally proposed a $6.8 billion budget in 2017.

The Associated Press

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