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Examiner
  • House endorses veterans lottery ticket

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  • JEFFERSON CITY It was a good day in the state capital for State Rep Sheila Solon of Blue Springs. Legislation that is her top priority this session got favorable nods in both the House and in the Senate.
    The Missouri House gave first-round approval to a measure sponsored by Solon that would create a separate lottery ticket to fund veterans' programs.
    The bill endorsed Wednesday would go on November's statewide ballot if it clears the Legislature.
    Solon says revenue from sales of the lottery ticket would provide a dedicated funding source for cash-strapped veterans' homes.
    But Democratic Rep. Jeremy LaFaver, of Kansas City, says the lottery is an inefficient way to fund government. LaFaver also said the new ticket could take money away from public schools and higher education, which are partly funded by lottery revenue.
    The bill needs one more vote before moving to the Senate.
    Meanwhile a Senate panel advanced legislation that could lower costs for some cancer patients.
    Bills endorsed Tuesday by the Senate insurance committee would require insurance companies to charge patients the same out-of-pocket costs for chemotherapy pills as they do for intravenous chemotherapy treatments.
    Patients often currently are charged much more for oral chemotherapy. That's because it is handled as a pharmacy benefit while intravenous treatments often trigger only a standard co-payment for an office visit.
    Twenty-seven states and the District of Columbia already have enacted laws requiring equal coverage for oral and intravenous chemotherapy treatments.
    The Missouri legislation now goes to the full Senate. A similar proposal sponsored by Solon is pending in a House committee.
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