The Senate in the Northern Marianas continues to parse through the details of the Commonwealth’s budget.

If senators do not act on it by October, they could risk putting the CNMI in a partial government shutdown. One area senators are concerned about is Medicaid, which could need up to $33 million if Congress does not extend the current local match rate. One senator commented during the meeting, saying  “I don’t know where I am going to find” that money.

CNMI State Medicate Agency Acting Director detailed what could come. 

"We can never know exactly what we need for the next fiscal year because our financials are always dependent on U.S. Congress," she said. "Now for FY23, the amount we are looking for reimbursement matching is $33 million if U.S. Congress does not extend the current medical assistance percentage which is the local has to pay for the 45% or we are going to maintain the 10.8%. Today are at 10.8% but that expires on Dec. 13 if there is no act in Congress."

If there’s no action in Congress the local government will be required to match 45% starting on Dec. 14.