New York governor wants hospitals to pay higher revenue taxes

Attempting to erase his state's deficit, New York Gov. David Paterson proposed a new state budget this week that includes higher taxes on hospital revenue and additional surcharges for healthcare providers. 

Despite the proposed measures, the state's Medicaid program is expected to grow by 2 percent--or $900 million--this year to $51.5 billion, reports Albany's Business Review. Paterson believes the state can handle such an increase because he expects the budget to grow at "less than half of the expected 2.0 percent inflation rate" for fiscal year 2010-11. 

"Nobody wants to make cuts, least of all me," Paterson said. "But this is not a budget of choice. It is a budget of necessity." 

Paterson is also seeking support from other states for a plan to shift the responsibility of costs for the elderly poor to the federal government. Such a plan could save $8 billion in healthcare costs in New York alone. 

To learn more:
- check out this Business Review (Albany) article