JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri senators continue to debate the extension of Missouri's Federal Reimbursement Allowance on Friday (FRA).
Senators disagree over a proposed amendment aimed at cutting off Medicaid funding for some family planning services. A vote to extend the FRA program was held as 22 senators voted 'nay' and 10 others voted 'yay'. Now the bill is back to an adoption motion.
Governor Mike Parson called the special session to order at noon on Tuesday. Parson has urged legislatures to approve the extension.
"Let me be clear, now is a time that demands leadership among legislators and not an opportunity to play games with billions of dollars and millions of livelihoods in pursuit of narrow political interests," Gov. Parson said in a news release.
FRA provides funding to various health care providers across the state, including hospitals, pharmacies, mental health facilities, nursing facilities, EMS providers and others. FRA was born out of a public-private partnership between state hospitals and state government.
Parson explained in a statement that it would cost the state an estimate $591 million in the next fiscal year if the program isn't extended. $788 million is the estimated cost for the state for fiscal year '23.
Republican Sen. Bob Onder proposed an amendment to the bill, which would cut off any government money for Planned Parenthood.
"I have an amendment to the amendment. The amendment amends our chapter 208 152. It protects Missouri tax payers from being forced to fund abortion providers or their associates," Onder said.
Republican Sen. Paul Wieland said he wants to block Medicaid coverage for the morning-after pill and intrauterine devices when used for abortions, according to the Associated Press.
Planned Parenthood and multiple gynecologists have told lawmakers that those lawmakers those treatments are not used to end pregnancies.
The Senate has until July 1 to come to a decision on the bill as a whole.