Trump budget would end vital programs in Ohio
- March 16, 2017
Local governments, the Great Lakes, senior services, Legal Aid – all at risk
Statement from Wendy Patton, Senior Project Director, Policy Matters Ohio
For more information, see Wendy’s initial analysis
“President Donald Trump’s ‘skinny’ budget blueprint would hurt many people and communities in Ohio. Federal funds made up 37 percent of our state budget in 2016-2017 – more than the national average of 31 percent. In the current two-year budget, federal funds provide $46.5 billion, a figure forecast to forecast grow to more than $50 billion in the governor’s proposed budget for 2018-2019. The state budget under consideration will be substantially changed if the many elements of the president’s plan are implemented by Congress.
Programs and services that protect our most vulnerable residents, like seniors and children, are on the chopping block. For example, the Trump budget eliminates the Community Services Block Grant, which is used to provide meals and other services to seniors in their homes, as well as the Senior Community Service Employment program. The 21st Century Community Learning Center initiative, which provides after-care and summer programming for school-aged children, is chopped. The Low Income Housing Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which helps families keep warm in cold winters and cool in hot summers, is eliminated. The state is not the only entity to face fiscal challenges. Cities like Cleveland rely on the Community Development Block Grant program to revitalize distressed neighborhoods. The Trump budget also proposes ending that program.
For the past six years, Ohio policymakers have prioritized tax cuts over investment in many essential programs. We are in the midst of an extremely tight 2018-2019 budget that cuts or flat funds many important public services. Now, in the face of the loss of significant federal funds, Ohioans stand to lose much more. Without current levels of federal support, there are real questions about whether the state can continue to maintain our transportation system, protect Lake Erie and care for the aging and the sick. Ohioans may see services we rely on, or that help members of our family, neighborhood and community, simply disappear.”
Policy Matters Ohio is a nonprofit, nonpartisan state policy research institute
with offices in Cleveland and Columbus.