This week could mean the difference between our patients and clients getting the care they need or having their care cut off.
The state legislature has still not finalized a budget for the next fiscal year. If the legislature fails to come to agreement on a budget by July 1, parts of the state government will shut down, denying some of our clients and patients the care they need and temporarily laying off staff.
The Senate Republicans along with conservative Democrats Rodney Tom and Tim Sheldon are holding our budget hostage, playing politics at the expense of our families and our patients. They are refusing to compromise on an agreement or include new revenue that would sustainably fund our state.
Our action is urgently needed to tell these senators that they can’t let our state government shut down. Email them now. Barring a last-minute budget agreement, the state will today send out 7-day notice of potential layoffs to some state employees. The notice is not a certain layoff, though. Even after that notice is sent, should lawmakers come to their senses and make an agreement this week, we will avert layoffs and care interruptions. This is a very uncertain time and our state has never faced this situation before.
More information about the contingency plans for state departments is available here.
There’s still time to avert the shutdown. We need to make our voices heard for a sustainable budget solution NOW. It’s outrageous that we could be facing care interruptions, payment delays, layoffs, and worse because this group of senators refuses to raise the revenue our state needs to sustainably fund our budget.
Already, our agencies are distracted from our missions by having to create contingency plans and reassure patients and clients who fear losing the services they need. Email Senators Tom, Hill, Fain, Litzow, Sheldon and Schoesler now and tell them we need a budget that puts patients before special interests. We need real revenue solutions to meet our state’s needs.