Riley hails $39M Medicaid bonus amid criticism

Governor Bob Riley says a $39.1 million federal performance bonus the Alabama Medicaid agency received for its efforts to enroll more low-income children was the result of
the hard work of state employees.

But a Democratic budget chairman in the House, Representative John Knight of Montgomery, says the Republican governor is trying to take credit for the Legislature expanding the health insurance program for low- and middle-income children. Knight says Riley attempted to
veto the budget to stop the expansion.

Riley said his veto of the budget was for the 2010 fiscal year and that the Medicaid bonus was for the 2009 fiscal year.

Alabama received the largest amount of money of the states receiving the bonuses for increasing the number of eligible children on Medicaid rolls.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.