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March 19, 2014DES MOINES, Iowa | By: Chris Roush / Associated Press (AP)
A proposal to extend health-care coverage to low-income Nebraskans is once again stirring debate among lawmakers.
Supporters argued Tuesday that a failure to pass the "Wellness in Nebraska Act" would hurt rural hospitals, lead more residents to postpone treatment and deprive Nebraska of 2.2 billion dollars in taxes paid to the federal government.
Opponents say it will divert money away from other priorities, such as education. Lawmakers ended the day without a vote, but are expected to resume debate today.
The proposal would help cover some 54,000 residents through a combination of Medicaid and subsidized private health insurance. It would cost an estimated 62 million dollars between July of this year and June 2020.