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Virginia facing high unexpected Medicaid costs

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia is facing a huge bill for unexpected Medicaid costs that hamper proposed new spending on schools or giving tax breaks for the poor.

State officials said Friday that Virginia has about $460 million in unforeseen Medicaid costs.

The news was first reported by the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Secretary of Finance Aubrey Layne said much of the new costs come from faulty forecasts overestimating the benefits of using private health insurers to cover a greater number of Medicaid recipients.

The price of covering the new costs could limit lawmakers’ ability to put spending in other areas, such as improving some of the state’s crumbling public schools.

The new unexpected costs are not due to Virginia’s recent decision to expand Medicaid eligibility to low-income adults under the Affordable Care Act.

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