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Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP) has joined an effort by business and health care leaders in Missouri to ask the Missouri Supreme Court to expand Medicaid coverage in Missouri. 

Greater St. Louis, Inc., which represents five regional business groups, enlisted BCLP Attorney Ben Clark and Judge Booker Shaw of Thompson Coburn to coordinate and oversee an amicus curiae brief asking the Missouri Supreme Court to overturn the ruling of the Cole County Circuit Court and find that the state of Missouri must expand Medicaid coverage – as the majority of Missouri voters approved last year – and fund it, which the Missouri General Assembly failed to do. The court will hear arguments on the case beginning July 13.

The Missouri, Kansas City and Springfield Chambers of Commerce and the Civic Council of Kansas City have joined Greater St. Louis in this legal effort.

“Expanding Medicaid drives economic growth and job creation, creates a more equitable community and improves the health of Missouri’s workforce,” Greater St. Louis CEO Jason Hall said in a release. “This issue is critical to future economic growth in Missouri, and we are stepping up to do whatever we can, including joining the effort in front of the Supreme Court, to ensure that the will of Missouri voters is enacted through the expansion of the Medicaid program.”

Citing economic modeling data from Regional Economic Models, Inc. (REMI), the amicus curiae brief notes that from the year 2022 to 2026, the increase in federal funding for Missouri that would accompany Medicaid expansion “would result in an increase in 16,630 jobs” and that nearly 88% of these new jobs would pay at least $15 an hour. The REMI model also anticipates an “increase in the size of the state economy of $2.5 billion in economic output and $1.6 billion in gross domestic product, and rise in state personal income of $1.1 billion.”

“The legal principles are clear and straightforward,” the brief states. “The plain language of the appropriations bills – House Bills 10 and 11 – provides appropriation authority for full funding the MO HealthNet [Medicaid] program, regardless of the scope of newly eligible persons. Amendment Two expanded the eligibility requirements of the MO HealthNet program, which must, according to House Bills 10 and 11, be funded in its entirety.”

The brief has been highlighted by a number of regional outlets, including June 30 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the St. Louis Business Journal and by St. Louis Public Radio.

 

This document provides a general summary and is for information/educational purposes only. It is not intended to be comprehensive, nor does it constitute legal advice. Specific legal advice should always be sought before taking or refraining from taking any action.