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Wednesday, March 24, 2010 - 4:58am

State Lawmakers With Full Plate Wednesday

Legislators will consider more than 30 bills at the state Capitol Wednesday.

The full schedule comes as Crossover Day fast approaches, planned for Friday. That’s the 30th day of the General Assembly calendar - the last for a bill to pass one chamber before it has the chance in the session’s remaining days to become law.

The bills to be considered today are many, including Senator Mitch Seabaugh’s controversial gun bill.

Out of Tuesday from the Capitol, a deal has been worked-out between the state’s hospital industry and top legislative leaders on a provider fee to help fill Georgia’s Medicaid gap.

Instead of the original plan of a 1.6 percent tax offered by Governor Sonny Perdue weeks ago, hospitals will accept a 1.45 percent tax. The fee will last for only three years, and critical access, psychiatric, and state-owned hospitals are exempt. The fee is expected to bring-in about $175 million. That money would be used by the state to draw-down more federal dollars for Medicaid.

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