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Medicaid expansion could be on the ballot

Medicaid expansion could be on the ballot

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- Supporters of expanding Medicaid coverage in Ohio say they will go to the ballot if lawmakers don't act.

The Healthy Ohioans Work campaign said it has filed over 5,800 signatures with the attorney general Wednesday in an effort to place Medicaid expansion on 2014 ballot.

Group spokesman Jon Allison says the campaign would prefer the Legislature to pass an extension of the federal-state program.

"I want to be very clear today that this action does not mean that we have given up on the General Assembly," Allison said.

Lawmakers have been trying to find common ground on whether to expand Medicaid to cover more low-income people for months. Republican leaders pulled it from the state budget this spring.

The House speaker recently said his chamber wouldn't be ready to take any action on Medicaid by October, but more likely by the end of the year.

Allison says they'll need to gather more than 115,000 signatures by 10 days before the 2014 legislative session. That will be sometime in late December.

(The Associated Press contributed to this story)

 

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