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Nixon proposes use of Medicaid money to restore benefit cuts for blind

UPI/Bill Greenblatt
The dome shines brightly on the Missouri State Capitol as the sun begins to set in Jefferson City, Missouri on March 22, 2011.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says his administration has identified some additional federal money that could help avoid cuts to a program that provides health benefits to the blind.

Nixon's administration said Wednesday that most of the additional $18 million of federal Medicaid money could be used to restore the blind benefit cuts included in a budget plan passed by the House.

That budget plan would eliminate a $30 million health care program for the blind and replace it with a slimmed-down, $6 million program. Nixon has opposed the cut. But House Republicans say it is necessary to avoid making a cut that Nixon had proposed to public colleges and universities.

Nixon's new budget recommendations will be considered first by the Senate Appropriations Committee.

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