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Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas
Welcome to the official website for the
Texas Senate
Senator Jane Nelson: District 12
Senator Jane Nelson
P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
February 1, 2017
Contact: Melissa Duncan

On the agenda: Containing Health Care Costs + Article I Agencies

Health Care Cost Panel - Employee Retirement System; Teacher Retirement System; Medicaid; Correctional Managed Care
Office of the Comptroller & Fiscal Programs
Employee Retirement System
Cancer Prevention & Research Institute
Veterans Commission

View the posting at:

Key Points for Today’s Hearing:

  • Projected FY 16-17 Medicaid costs total nearly 30 percent of the overall state budget. By comparison, Medicaid accounted for approximately 20 percent of the state budget in 2000.
  • All combined, the FY 16-17 health care costs will total $66 billion across all state agencies and we are facing a projected 8.5 percent, or $5.6 billion increase this coming biennium.
  • Senator Nelson appointed the Workgroup on Health Care Costs to review ways to contain the state’s escalating health care costs across all state agencies delivering health care.
  • Article I funding in SB 1:
    • Maintains state funding for ERS retirement at the 10-percent constitutional cap and keeps the member contributions at 9.5 percent;
    • Includes $579.8 million AF to cover assumed 8.5 percent growth in health care benefits for state employees;
    • Provides the full $600 million appropriation for CPRIT; and
    • Maintains services for veterans at FY 16-17 levels.

Statement from Senator Nelson: "We must get a handle on health care costs, which are out of control and hindering our ability to meet other needs. There are steps we can take to help our pocketbook without jeopardizing the care of our retired teachers, state employees, Medicaid clients and prison population."