Qualification Effort for Medi-Cal Funding Initiative Likely Requires Full Count of Signatures

Medi-Cal Funding and Accountability Act of 2014 Won't Appear on November 2014 Ballot

Jun 03, 2014, 18:05 ET from California Hospital Association

SACRAMENTO, Calif., June 3, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following statement is being issued by C. Duane Dauner, President/CEO, California Hospital Association:

The California Hospital Association (CHA) is disappointed by news that signatures to qualify a ballot initiative aimed at ensuring a stable source of federal health care funding for hospitals that provide care to California's most vulnerable residents will likely not meet the random sampling threshold as required by state law. 

With approximately half of the random sampling of signatures completed for the Medi-Cal Funding and Accountability Act of 2014, the Secretary of State's report shows that the validity rate for the ballot measure is lower than anticipated because too many duplicate signatures were submitted to elections officials.  As a result, a full count of the signatures will likely be required. 

Under California law, elections officials have 30 working days to complete a full check of signatures, which means the full count will not be completed prior to June 26 deadline for qualifying for the November 4, 2014 general election ballot.  Thus, the ballot measure will likely be delayed until November 8, 2016.

The Medi-Cal Funding and Accountability Act of 2014 is a constitutional amendment initiative.  It requires 807,615 valid signatures to qualify for the ballot.  A total of 1,223,837 signatures were submitted.  CHA is confident that when the full check of the signatures is completed, the measure will qualify for the 2016 ballot. 

There should be no negative financial impacts on California hospitals or the state from this delay.  The measure, if approved by voters, will extend the existing 2014-2016 Medi-Cal hospital fee program permanently.                                                                   

SOURCE California Hospital Association