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Committee okays partial restoration of working disabled program

By Marshall Griffin, KWMU

St. Louis, MO – A bill that would restore health coverage to the working disabled in Missouri was unanimously approved by a House committee on Wednesday.

The "Ticket to Work" bill would allow about 4,100 disabled people to be able to work at a job and still qualify for Medicaid coverage.

"We have set the earning limit to 350% of the federal poverty level," noted the bill's sponsor, Republican Representative Charles Portwood, of St. Louis County. "For an individual, that's about $34,500, and for a couple, I believe, it's 42,500."

Portwood hopes the full House will vote on the measure next week.

The "Ticket to Work" bill would be a smaller version of the Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities program, which Gov. Matt Blunt eliminated two years ago. Portwood says Blunt has expressed support for this smaller version of the old program.