As reported in this article in the Columbus Dispatch, Ohio will be joining 18 states and the District of Columbia in expanding its eligibility for Medicaid to individuals under the Affordable Care Act. While this is not only good news for the prospective Medicaid recipients, it’s also good news for employers in Ohio who will be facing the shared responsibility mandate in 2014. Employers covered by the mandate can be subject to penalties for each full-time employee to whom the employer does not offer affordable health coverage. But in many cases, the penalties are not assessed for employees who are eligible for government-provided health care, including Medicaid, because those employees are not eligible for any premium tax credits or cost-sharing reductions under the Affordable Care Act. So Ohio and other states that expand their Medicaid eligibility potentially decrease the number of low-income employees for whom employers may be required to either offer affordable health coverage or pay penalties.