Susan's Blog

Friday, November 20, 2009

Stop the Bleeding

Massachusetts readers:
This plea came in from the ARC of Massachusetts. The Legislature is bailing on its responsibilities again. They have ended the year’s session without resolving the budget!!!

Ask Legislators to reconvene — unfinished business can’t wait.
Take Action!

People with Disabilities need help now!

The state House of Representatives adjourned formal sessions for the year last night, having failed to address important business. Those matters that it didn’t address could have helped stave off further damage to the lives of thousands of people with disabilities and their families.

As a Boston Globe editorial today points out, the House “rejected or hacked away at many of Governor Patrick’s proposed cuts [outside Human Services]… and rejected the governor’s request for authority to make emergency cuts to agencies outside the executive branch.” See the Globe editorial here.

This is all bad news for disability services, as it limits the Governor’s ability to spread cuts across a broad variety of agencies beyond the Exec. Office of Health and Human Services. Or as the Globe puts it, the Legislature’s failure to grant the Governor expanded 9C authority “only concentrates the pain — especially for human services agencies” and will have “grim consequences.”

Some of these consequences can be averted if the Legislature goes back into formal session to give the Governor the authority he needs to limit cuts to disability services. We recognize that this is only a short-term solution. Our leaders need to go further by adopting a new state revenue strategy. However, without this step, people with disabilities and their families will be at much greater risk.

Please use the Action Alert to email your legislators as well as Speaker DeLeo and President Murray to request that they:
Reconvene a Formal Session
Vote to give the Governor Expanded 9C Authority
Vote to give the Governor authority to transfer funds between line-items.
Edit this message with a personal story and call your legislators to follow up.

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