- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - Here’s another sign that prospects for a new payroll tax sought by Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin are looking dim.

The chairwoman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Janet Ancel, said Thursday she doubts her committee will support the 0.7 percent payroll tax the governor asked for last month.

Shumlin wanted to use most of the money raised through the tax to increase Medicaid payments to health providers. He says those payments are too low now, resulting in higher charges to commercial insurance companies like Blue Cross Blue Shield and higher premiums for those companies’ subscribers.

Administration officials say some of the payroll tax proceeds were to pay for the expansion of Medicaid under the federal affordable care act. That money will have to be raised elsewhere.

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