Everyone’s Vying For A Cut Of The Money Raised By State’s New Tobacco Tax
A fight is brewing in Sacramento over what to do with the $1.2 billion.
Is The Fight Over Tobacco Tax Money About Helping Patients Or Helping Doctors?
One of the biggest budget fights unfolding behind closed doors in Sacramento this week is over how to spend the $1.2 billion raised by the state’s new tobacco tax, with dentists, doctors, gynecologists, and podiatrists all vying for a cut.The biggest ask comes from the California Medical Association, which wants at least half of the money, $610 million a year, to increase payments to doctors who treat low-income patients on Medi-Cal. The group has long argued that low reimbursement rates force doctors to limit the number of Medi-Cal patients they can see, making it harder for some patients to find care. (Dembosky, 6/7)