BOSTON—The Massachusetts Senate has approved a Republican-backed amendment requiring the state to take steps to deny benefits to illegal immigrants.
The amendment was adopted Wednesday as part of a supplemental spending plan and requires the Patrick administration to draft measures to ensure that those who are not lawfully entitled to benefits don't receive them.
Passage of the Senate amendment comes after the administration said one percent of Medicaid spending in Massachusetts during the past fiscal year had gone to services for immigrants who couldn't prove their legal status.
That translates into $93 million out of $9.6 billion in Medicaid spending.
The report found the vast majority of Medicaid spending, about 94 percent, covered expenditures for citizens. Another five percent went to qualified immigrants or legal immigrants not yet qualified.