Sarasota News Leader

09/20/2013

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SAY 'PLEASE' State Sen. Nancy Detert of Venice addresses legislators. Photo courtesy of myfloridahouse.gov LAWMAKERS GET AN EARFUL ABOUT 2014 LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES By Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor Dozens of government and nonprofit leaders stepped to the mic Wednesday, Sept. 18, to tell Sarasota County's state legislative delegation about their priorities for the 2014 legislative session, and while the list of issues was long and varied, one message kept being repeated: Expand access to healthcare. Representatives from Sarasota Memorial Hospital, Planned Parenthood, First Step, Healthy Start and the League of Women Voters all called on the delegation to push either for the expansion of Medicaid called for in ObamaCare, or something similar to the plan presented last year by state Sen. Joe Negron, R-Stuart. Negron's plan would have used federal healthcare dollars to offer low-income Floridians access to private health insurance, rather than enrolling them in Medicaid. It passed in the state Senate, but failed in the House, which refused We have the opportunity to access to accept any money $50 billion in federal funds over many made available by the years to extend care. We hope you will federal government to consider this vital issue again this year. expand healthcare. David Verinder Chief Operating Officer Sarasota Memorial Hospital "The state has the opportunity to care for more people and to

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