BUDGETS

Baker Outlines Steps To Lower Medicaid Drug Prices

Jan 25, 2019

It’s an eye-popping number: $1.9 billion. It’s what Massachusetts spent last year on drugs prescribed to patients covered by MassHealth, and it’s nearly double what it was in 2012.

Gov. Charlie Baker’s budget for the coming year includes a plan to disrupt the trend, a move he says will save $80 million.

It starts with direct price negotiations. Baker says the proposal is aimed at 20 drugs pending approval or recently approved by the FDA.

In the opening salvo of the annual state budget debate, Gov. Charlie Baker is proposing to hike spending next fiscal year 1.5 percent over current levels.

The governor on Wednesday outlined his plan for the state to spend $42.7 billion during the fiscal year that begins on July 1.

The Republican’s ideas for revamping the 26-year-old public school funding formula, and a companion bill addressing education policies themselves, will likely get the most scrutiny by lawmakers and advocates.

'Stop This Shutdown': Federal Workers Rally In Boston

Jan 14, 2019

Since the partial government shutdown, Lilly Simmons, who works with the Environmental Protection Agency, says she’s “been at home, sitting around twiddling my thumbs for a couple of weeks.” But she’d rather be at work.

That’s why she and dozens of other furloughed federal employees rallied in downtown Boston Friday to call for an end to the shutdown, chanting, “We want to work” and “Stop this shutdown.”

With many federal workers now losing hope that they'll get a paycheck this week, stress is mounting. But so are some efforts to help the hundreds of thousands affected by the ongoing shutdown — including about 8,000 in Massachusetts.

In Boston this week, a pop-up food pantry opened for men and women of the Coast Guard, the only branch of the armed services working without pay.

Congressman Richard Neal.
Dave Roback / The Republican / masslive.com/photos

Congress begins work Thursday while 800,000 federal employees are out of work or working without pay.

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