House Passes MFP Reauthorization (Again)

The US House of Representatives has passed a three-month reauthorizationof the Money Follows the Person (MFP) program as part of the Medicaid Extenders Act of 2019.

The bill, sponsored by new Energy and Commerce Committee (E&C) chair Frank Pallone (D—NJ), also includes an extension of spousal impoverishment protections and FMAP penalties for states without an asset Verification Program by 2020—but does not include the Advancing Care for Exceptional Kids Act (ACE Kids), which had been included along with the other provisions in December’s IMPROVE Act.

 The bill passed the House by voice vote under a suspension of the rules, but its prospects in the Senate are uncertain. Legislation of all sorts is stalled in the Senate by the current budget standoff. Further, some Republican supporters of the IMPROVE Act, proposed at the end of last year in an attempt to pass a short MFP reauthorization and ACEKids authorization during the lame duck congress, were particularly motivated by their support for ACEKids and may be less likely to push for the Medicaid Extenders Act due to the absence of that program.