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Gov. Pat Quinn Signs Schoenberg, Reitz Law to Grab $1.15 Billion from Feds for Illinois Hospitals

State Senator Jeff Schoenberg

(Chicago, IL) — November 20, 2009. Governor Pat Quinn signed legislation at a press conference today that could draw an estimated $1.15 billion in new federal Medicaid dollars to Illinois to help speed payments to thousands of local hospitals, fund social service providers, and provide relief to the state’s beleaguered budget.

“Trucking off to Children’s Memorial Hospital to have Gov. Quinn sign my bill that will generate $1.15 billion in new federal funds for hospitals and health care and human service providers. That should give many of the state’s nonprofit providers some oxygen as they seek to stay afloat,” wrote State Senator Jeff Schoenberg (D-Evanston), the senate sponsor of the law, House Bill 542, his Facebook page today.

This is a big deal.

Hospitals and social service providers across the state are being financially starved by Illinois’ empty treasury. Once an invoice is submitted, vendors are waiting 3 to 6 months to get paid. This unheralded law will rescue many of these providers.

In addition to Schoenberg, sponsors include State Senators: Mattie Hunter, Susan Garrett, William Delgado, Dan Kotowski, Jacqueline Collins, Donne Trotter, and John Millner.

House sponsors were State Rep. Dan Reitz, Barbara Flynn Currie, Brandon Phelps, Lou Lang, Mary Flowers, Patricia Bellock, Rosemary Mulligan, Bill Black, Jack Franks, Keith Farnham, Linda Chapa LaVia, Sandy Cole, Mike Smith, Daniel Beiser, and Patrick Verschoore.

“This legislation will provide breathing room and a financial life-time to Illinois healthcare providers,” said Lang, a Deputy Majority Leader.

Congratulate Quinn and lawmakers. Led by the likes of Schoenberg, they had the foresight and tenacity to push this law forward. It means an extra $1.15 billion to Illinois. $1.15 billion. That kind of dough is hard to come by these days.

If you sing in the shower, you should belt out a few bars of praise for these legislators next time you’re lathering up.

Joining Quinn at the press conference:

  • Patrick Magoon, President and Chief Executive Officer, Children’s Memorial Hospital
  • Michael Curran, Chief Operating Officer, Norwegian American Hospital
  • Howard Peters, Senior Vice President, Illinois Hospital Association
  • Barry Maram, Director, Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services
  • State Senator Jeffrey Schoenberg (D-Evanston)
  • State Rep. John Fritchey (D-Chicago)
  • State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago)
  • Alderman Vi Daley (43rd)

About David Ormsby

David, a public relations consultant and blogger at The Huffington Post, is an ex-Press Secretary of the Illinois Democratic Party.


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