(HE) TONIGHT RHODE ISLAND'S ENTIRE CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION IS CALLING ON THEIR CAPITOL HILL COLLEAGUES TO RESTORE FUNDING TO THE CHILDREN'S HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM WHICH PROVIDES LOW- COST MEDICAL COVERAGE TO MILLIONS OF KIDS, NATIONWIDE RHODE ISLAND'S FUNDING FOR THE PROGRAM IS SET TO RUN OUT IN THE SPRING EYEWITNESS NEWS REPORTER STEPH MACHADO JOINS US NOW WITH LOCAL COVERAGE (SM) STATE OFFICIALS SAY THE FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM THAT PROVIDES HEALTH INSURANCE TO CHILDREN AND PREGNANT WOMEN COULD RUN OUT HERE IN RHODE ISLAND IN MARCHIF CONGRESS DOESN'T RENEW THE PROGRAM HERE ARE THE NUMBERS HERE IN RHODE ISLAND FOR THE "CHILDRENS HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM" OR "CHIP" IT CURRENTLY COVER 27,000 CHILDREN AND PREGNANT WOMEN

FOR A TOTAL OF 749 MILLION DOLLARS 86 PERCENT OF THAT COMES FROM FEDERAL FUNDING SO TODAY OUR CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION HELD A NEWS CONFERENCE AT MEETING STREETFLANKED BY THE KIDS WHO GO TO SCHOOL THERE CALLING ON CONGRESS TO RE-UP THE FUNDING FOR THE PROGRAM

WHICH EXPIRED IN SEPTEMBER THERE IS A BIPARTISAN BILL IN THE SENATE TO EXTEND THE PRORAM UNTIL 2022 BUT IT HAS NOT BEEN BROUGHT TO THE FLOOR Sen

Sheldon Whitehouse/D-Rhode Island: This really ought to be easy For 20 years that this bill has been law, it's been bipartisan and we have never, ever failed to reauthorize it Something about this congress, this leadership and this administration has prevented us from reauthorizing this bill (SM) AND AGAIN HERE IN RHODE ISLAND THE MONEY FROM CHIP WOULD RUN OUT IN MARCH IN CONGRESS DOESN'T ACT IF THAT HAPPENS, A SPOKESPERSON FOR THE STATE SAYS A SIGNIFICANT NUMBER OF THE PEOPLE COVERED COULD BE COVERED BY MEDICAID INSTEAD BUT THE CHIP PROGRAM MATCHES MORE DOLLARS SO LOSING IT WOULD HAVE A SERIOUS IMPACT ON THE STATE'S BUDGET

STEPH MACHADO

Source: Youtube