House approves Medicaid and teacher funding package

The dome of the United States Capitol building in Washington, D.C.
The dome of the United States Capitol building in Washington, D.C. iStockphoto

They came, they voted, they boomeranged home. The U.S. House of Representatives interrupted its six-week summer recess to approve a package of emergency spending measures.

Democratic Congressman Bob Filner, who represents Imperial Valley and parts of San Diego counties, flew overnight to cast his “yes” vote for the spending package. He said, "It’s a rough thing, but it was really important and I’m glad we had a chance to do it."

The measure provides nearly $2 billion to help this state cover health care costs for the poorest Californians. GOP Congressman David Dreier of San Dimas voted "no." He said there’s no guarantee the money won’t end up paying retirement benefits for the former city manager of Bell. "You tell me with absolute certainty, Kitty, that with money being fungible that not a penny of this could go into California’s pension fund and end up in Robert Rizzo’s pocket."

The package also contains money for local public school districts to keep an estimated 16,500 California teachers on the payroll.

Congress isn’t scheduled to return to the capital until after Labor Day.

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