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Published March 30, 2011, 07:34 PM

Deep Cuts for health, Welfare Programs Pass MN Senate

A Republican plan to overhaul Minnesota's health care programs and cut into services for the poor and disabled has cleared the Senate.

By: Brian Bakst, Martiga Lohn, Associated Press

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Republican plan to overhaul Minnesota's health care programs and cut into services for the poor and disabled has cleared the Senate.

The bill passed on a 37-26 vote Wednesday.

It would reduce projected spending on health and welfare programs by $1.6 billion over two years to help plug a $5 billion deficit.

Senate Health and Human Services Committee Chairman David Hann (han) says the bill would bring fast-growing health care spending under control.

It would prohibit state spending to implement the federal health care overhaul unless the U.S. Supreme Court upholds the law.

The bill would also undo a Medicaid expansion ordered by Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and replace state health programs for patients above certain income limits with subsidies to buy private insurance.

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