Minn. GOP health bill won’t bank on federal action

Republican lawmakers negotiating a health and welfare spending package have decided they won’t count on big savings from a state health care overhaul that requires federal approval.

The move by a House-Senate conference committee Thursday addresses 1 of Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton’s major objections.

Their bill would still require the state to seek federal permission to revamp parts of public health care programs, but it would rely on other spending cuts unless federal approval comes through.

The entire package would cut about $1.6 billion from projected general fund spending on health and social service programs over the next years, about twice as much as Dayton proposed.

Health and welfare programs are 1 of the major sticking points in unfinished budget talks as the state faces a projected $5 billion deficit.