March 2, 2023

RALEIGH – A statement from Donald Bryson, President of the John Locke Foundation:

In what can only be deemed as the largest expansion of entitlements in state history, the Republican-majority legislature has decided to saddle North Carolina taxpayers with significant financial burdens and drive up healthcare wait times for our state’s neediest and most vulnerable citizens.

This course reversal on Medicaid expansion is hugely disappointing. For years, the fiscally conservative legislature has stuck to sound economic principles. Their assertions that expansion will end if it becomes fiscally untenable is a pipe dream. Expanding entitlements while cutting taxes is a recipe to turn North Carolina from the national tax reform model to the disappointment of Kansas’s fiscal failures.

In addition, their failure to meaningfully address supply-side problems will only exacerbate the statewide healthcare shortage and drive up wait times and costs for the general public.

Although the House and Senate’s agreement is purported to include some Certificate of Need reform, North Carolinians will remain short of access to care without a full CON repeal.