Tennessee lawmakers OK $33.8B annual state spending plan

Tennessee State Capitol generic

Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee lawmakers have approved the state’s $33.8 billion annual spending plan after rejecting Democrats’ attempts to include a provision that could revive Medicaid expansion.

The House voted 80-12 in favor of the budget on Thursday, and the Senate later followed suit on a 32-1 vote.

The Republican-controlled House voted largely along partisan lines in refusing to authorize Republican Gov. Bill Haslam to strike a deal with the federal government for Medicaid expansion. Haslam’s Insure Tennessee plan would extend health coverage to 280,000 low-income people.

The House also rejected one Republican lawmaker’s bid to redirect $60 million from the $120 million earmarked for a new state museum in Nashville.

Passing a balanced budget is one of the few constitutional requirements for Tennessee lawmakers.

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