New York Budget Would Cut Funding to AIDS Agencies
The New York Times reports today that New York groups providing housing and other services to low-income people with HIV/AIDS "stand to see their budgets evaporate" if a "stripped-down" $80 billion state budget enacted last week is not supplemented. The budget is for the fiscal year that began April 1. Jennifer Flynn, executive director of the New York City AIDS Housing Network, said, "We could be denied all of last year's money and one-third of this year's. Waiting lists for houses would get longer, our member groups would lay people off, services at existing housing would be cut back." In his budget blueprint, Gov. George Pataki (R) proposed either "leaving out social service programs" from the budget or cutting their funding. The Times reports that the state Legislature, "frustrated by Pataki's refusal to negotiate," passed the "bare-bones" budget and hope that "the resulting pain is so acute that interest groups ... will pressure Pataki to bargain with them on a multi-billion-dollar supplemental budget." However, many legislators fear that the plan will "backfire" and that the cuts in funding for social service groups will remain. The Times says that the chances of the governor and the Legislature agreeing on a supplemental budget are "cloudy ... at best." However, if a supplemental budget is passed, "some of the harm to programs can be averted," the Times reports (Perez-Pena/McKinley, New York Times, 8/8).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.