Proposed Budget Will Cut To The Bone Programs that Boost Upstate New York: Healthcare for Children and Seniors, including Medicaid; The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative; Funding To Combat The Opioid Epidemic; Crop Insurance and Support for Farmers; Medical Research And Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) Are All On Chopping Block

Admin Budget Targets New York’s Most Vulnerable Citizens and Rewards the Already Super-Wealthy

Schumer: Proposed Budget Takes Will Pull Rug Out From Under Many Upstate New York Families, Seniors and Communities  

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer today sounded the alarm regarding the Trump administration’s newly proposed FY18 budget.  The new budget would hurt Upstate New York’s middle class and those struggling to get there, and undermine critical programs including: Great Lake Restoration Initiative (GLRI), funding to confront the opioid epidemic, the CDBG Program, critical railroad safety programs, agricultural aid for family farms, support for education and higher-education research and higher-education and many more. Schumer provided statements for several major areas in which the budget would negatively impact Upstate New York.


“New Yorkers should hear this loudly and clearly: I will fight with every fiber of my being to beat back the administration’s harsh plans to weaken, wound and destroy our health care programs including Medicaid. This is one giant broken promise. These programs are enormously popular because they work, delivering affordable and vital healthcare to our children, seniors in nursing homes, people addicted to opioids, people with disabilities and others. Medicaid and programs that provide healthcare to kids and seniors need to be strengthened not cut. Thousands of New Yorkers rely on these programs to lead decent, independent and healthy lives,” said Senator Schumer.  “Our country must keep its promise to our seniors and children by ensuring they have access to health care and economic security. I will fight these cuts tooth and nail make sure that Medicare and Medicaid are not only preserved, but strengthened for generations to come.” 

“When it comes to something as important as health care, we cannot allow a situation to arise in which children cannot get the checkup or prescription they need because their family cannot afford the payments or insurance,” said Senator Schumer.  “The Trump administration’s misguided and cruel cuts to Medicaid and CHIP are simply unacceptable, and I will be pushing my colleagues in Congress to make sure that the administration’s  plan to cut billions of dollars to the program are dead on arrival in the Senate. The Trump budget proposes slashing Medicaid by over $600 billion – in addition to billions in cuts included in the House-passed deeply unpopular and destructive Trumpcare bill. No family should ever have to make the agonizing decision between taking their child to the doctor and footing the cost of exorbitant medical bills they cannot afford. We must do all that we can to ensure that Medicaid and CHIP remain in place for working families and their children.”


“Our family farmers are the backbone of Upstate New York’s economy. Which is why the federal government should be doing everything possible to protect and invest in New York’s thriving farming industry” said Senator Schumer.  “President Trump’s unprecedented move to cut critical resources for our farmers is unacceptable.  This budget would not only cut staff for local service agencies like Farm Service Agency (FSA) that help our farmers navigate USDA emergency assistance programs during severe weather events, but would also cut funding for critical agricultural research that keeps our farmers competitive in the worldwide market.  Additionally, cutting important programs that provide business development and job training programs, as well as clean and reliable drinking water to our small rural communities are absurd policy shifts and a direct attack on rural America and farmers who are vital to the growth of Upstate New York.”


“Millions of New York’s seniors, veterans, and individuals who are disabled, rely on their Social Security checks to help pay for the ever-increasing cost of rent, medicine and groceries. For many Social Security benefits are the difference.  The Trump administration’s proposed cuts to the Social Security Disability program is a broken promise and would be disastrous for those already struggling to get by. It is unconscionable for the administration to propose cuts to Social Security programs by more than $72 billion dollars and with more than 500,000 families receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and over 640,000 receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you can bet that I will do all in my power to make sure that these cuts never pass in the Senate,” said Senator Schumer.


“The GLRI works, is bi-partisan and popular and cutting it is mind-bogglingly unwise. It is imperative that we continue to properly monitor, preserve and rehabilitate our Great Lakes so residents and visitors can enjoy these invaluable Upstate NY resources for years to come,” said Senator Schumer, who noted that they are also a major source of drinking water. “We need to continue to protect New York’s most vital water resources – like Lake Ontario and Lake Erie from any cuts proposed by the Trump administration. These critical natural resources allow for more fishing and tourism opportunities, which means new jobs and millions of dollars of new revenue. The administration should be fully funding this program instead of putting it on the chopping block”

CUTS HOME HEATING AID FOR THE ELDERLY (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program - LIHEAP)

“It gets real cold in Upstate New York and heating the house is not cheap. The administration’s proposal to cut off needy seniors from the support they need to pay the heating bills and keep the wolf of winter at the door is flat-out cruel and must be reversed. Hundreds of thousands of fixed-income seniors and low-to moderate- income New Yorkers each year rely on LIHEAP to help pay for the home heating costs that have become a larger and larger share of their budget. These major federal investments help New York’s most vulnerable cover their high energy costs. This means fewer people will have to make the agonizing decision over whether to pay energy bills or put food on the table,” said Senator Schumer.

“Decimating CDBG will be incredibly damaging to Upstate New York because it is a non-replaceable stream of investment in essential services for area residents and economic development projects,” said Senator Schumer. “That is why I will fight these drastic cuts tooth and nail to make sure the CDBG program remains fully funded and that New York gets the money it deserves. More than ever, we need to make sure our local governments and communities have the resources they need to provide affordable housing, deliver vital services to working families and seniors and continue the neighborhood revitalization efforts critical to local economic development.”


“The proposed elimination of the Essential Air Service Program is reckless and counterproductive and will jeopardize air service for rural communities across the country, especially in Upstate New York. There is no question about it - access to air travel is good for businesses, good for jobs, good for the middle class and good for financial health of the community," said Senator Schumer.  “Small local airports like Jamestown, Massena, Ogdensburg, Plattsburgh, Saranac Lake and Watertown are vital to the communities they serve and all could be affected. Rather than eliminating pieces of this critical federal investment, the administration should be making sure that small airports can continue to support local residents and regional development. Let me be clear, I will do all in my power to make sure harmful cuts to Upstate airports will never fly. I will work with my colleagues in the Senate to keep my promise and fight to protect air service in small communities and to make sure that any eliminations are grounded permanently.”


“The administration’s proposed elimination of the TIGER Grant Program will deeply hurt New York Communities now pursuing economy-boosting transportation and infrastructure projects.  With New York State’s infrastructure crumbling it is critical that we give communities the resources they need to modernize and rebuild infrastructure instead of making it harder for localities. Everything from returning cars to Main St. in downtown Buffalo, to the transformation of Rochester’s Inner Loop, to improvements to the Capital District and Hudson Valley bus services have been funded by TIGER grants. These projects demonstrate clearly how important this program is and I will do everything I can to fully restore the TIGER program in this year’s Appropriations process," said Senator Schumer.


“Rather than investing in fixing our crumbling infrastructure and putting people back to work, the Trump administration is proposing major cuts to the Highway Trust Fund. This drastic $96 billion cut would be devastating to counties in Upstate New York. Cash strapped local governments would be forced to delay or completely stop critical infrastructure projects, like roads to bridges. New York’s infrastructure would suffer dearly if the administration’s cut passed Congress,” said Senator Schumer. “The Highway Trust Fund is the single largest source of federal infrastructure funding for Upstate New York, and our economy and communities’ rely on these federal dollars for a wide variety of projects. I will fight to protect the Highway Trust Fund so that local governments have the resources they need to build and maintain roads and bridges throughout Upstate New York.”


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