The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.

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REGION BRIEFS: State budget to get boost of $18 million

Virginia’s budget will see an $18 million boost this year thanks to a federal bonus for enrolling more children in a government health insurance program.

The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced the year-end bonuses Monday. Virginia is one of 23 states receiving more than $307 million total.

The bonuses reward states that have made it easier for families to enroll in Medicaid and CHIP, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, with the goal of enrolling more children in health insurance plans. In Virginia the CHIP program goes by the name of Family Access to Medical Insurance Security, or FAMIS.

According to CMS, the bonuses correspond to the state’s increase in children’s Medicaid enrollment above a specific target.

The bonuses have been awarded each year since 2009 under a law that year reauthorizing CHIP. This is the last year the bonus money is available.

Virginia was awarded a $20 million bonus for fiscal year 2012 and received $24 million for fiscal year 2011.

A spokeswoman for the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services said the money is spent within the Medicaid and FAMIS programs.

—Chelyen Davis

Body of missing man found in Caroline

A missing hunter who prompted an overnight search in Caroline County this weekend has died.

James H. Hunter, 78, of Bowling Green, had left his home Saturday around 3 p.m. to go hunting, Caroline authorities said.

His family called police around 10 p.m. when he did not return home.

An overnight search was conducted using tracking dogs, but the search was unsuccessful. A Caroline alert was sent out Sunday around 7 a.m. to the public to be on the lookout for the man, who was last seen wearing jeans and a camouflage jacket.

Around 8 a.m. Sunday, his body was found in a field.

Authorities believe he died of a health-related ailment.

—Portsia Smith