Indiana lawmakers back 3-year ban on building nursing homes

File Photo (Marcel Oosterwijk/Flickr)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A three-year moratorium on construction of most new nursing homes around Indiana has been approved by state lawmakers.

The state Senate voted 36-12 Tuesday to give final approval to the bill, sending it to Gov. Mike Pence.

House members voted earlier this month by a narrow margin to support the proposal.

Supporters say the moratorium is needed because Indiana has thousands of unused nursing home beds, which are costing the state millions in annual Medicaid costs based on a payment formula that includes construction costs.

Those against the measure say it violates free-market principles and will cost jobs.

A similar proposal failed in 2014 after private lobbying by then-House Speaker Pro Tem Eric Turner whose family business faced losing millions of dollars. Turner resigned from the Legislature in November.

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