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A small group of Racine County residents have banded together to advance efforts to expand Medicaid coverage in Racine County.

Specifically, Fast 4 Fairness is asking residents to sign an online petition asking county supervisors to advance a resolution that would free up some $96 million in Racine County for a full Medicaid expansion here.

The vote would be largely symbolic, a story in The Journal Times notes. State legislators would have to approve a measure allowing counties to act independently of the state, and with Republicans in control, that seems highly unlikely.

Still, if Racine County supervisors voted “yes,” the county would join 19 other counties across the state in either voting for a statewide expansion or to allow counties to expand coverage on their own.

Gov. Scott Walker announced last year he would refuse a full statewide expansion, according to a story in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

The federal government would have funded the expansion for three years, but state Sen. Alberta Darling, R-River Hills, said there was no guarantee that funding would have lasted for the full three years.

“There’s no certainty with the federal government,” she is quoted as saying.

The county resolution is currently in the hands of the Health and Human Development Committee, and Fast 4 Fairness is asking for the Medicaid resolution be put to a vote by the full county board.

To garner more attention to the issue, the group will host events from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on four consecutive Saturdays in March – the 8, 15, 22, 29 – “pray, fast and take action to ensure affordable health care to Racine County’s working poor.”

According to the petition, implementing a Medicaid expansion in Racine County would impact over 3,000 residents, including children.

Tim Brown signed the petition, and left a note saying it’s time to put ideology aside to get behind less expensive preventative care for all.

“This is not the time for ideology, when people’s health and thus livelihood are at stake. Research proves preventative medicine is less expensive than treating full-blown health problems. Allow everyone healthcare coverage through Medicaid,” he wrote.