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New York State has a massive deficit due to the combination of falling revenue and increased costs associated with fighting the pandemic. In order to balance the State’s budget, Governor Cuomo is proposing drastic cuts to human services, Medicaid, and education if the federal government does not provide financial assistance. Funding for programs like Independent Living Centers are at risk of devastating budget cuts as a result.

Congress provided an enhanced match for Medicaid, which includes a provision called “maintenance of effort” which prevents New York State from implementing many of the cuts the Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT) proposed while accepting the enhanced match. But Governor Cuomo is reportedly lobbying Congress to get rid of this language so he can implement even greater cuts to Medicaid along with human services this month.

Human service providers such as Independent Living Centers provide a wide array of services that keep people out of nursing facilities and other institutions, locate accessible and affordable housing, assist in obtaining a job and providing support services, and help people access many other critical programs. These services are more critical than ever before during the pandemic. Significant cuts to human services providers like Independent Living Centers will only result in greater levels of unemployment, homelessness, poverty, and increased costs to Medicaid.

It is important that your Congressional Representative and Senators Schumer and Gillibrand hear from everyday New Yorkers that aid to states and preserving the ‘MOE’ is important and will directly impact your ability to access critical community-based services.

What You Can Do:
Click here to send a letter to your Senators and your congressional Representative explaining why aid to the states and preserving the maintenance of effort language is critical.

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