Stitt Issues More Vetoes; Lawmakers To Return For Possible Overrides

May 22, 2020

The Oklahoma Legislature is returning to the Capitol on Friday and could override Gov. Kevin Stitt’s recent vetoes with a two-thirds vote in each chamber.

Stitt vetoed a bill Thursday designed to fund his own Medicaid expansion plan, leaving it unclear how his proposal would be paid for.

The bill would have increased a fee that hospitals pay from 2.5% to 4% and was expected to generate about $134 million annually to help fund the state’s portion of Stitt’s proposed Medicaid expansion, dubbed Soonercare 2.0.

Stitt said in his veto message that the funding stream would not have covered the full cost of the expansion and was only authorized for one year.

“From day one, I’ve said one-time funds are not the way pay for Medicaid expansion,” Stitt said in a statement.

Stitt wants to take advantage of a block-grant-style Medicaid expansion offered by the Trump administration that would give states more control over Medicaid in exchange for a limit on how much the feds kick in. If the Trump administration approves Stitt’s proposal, the Medicaid expansion would take effect July 1, but it’s not clear now how the state would pay for its share of the plan.