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President's Message
Membership Meeting
Explanation of Major Changes in Bylaws (Piilani Kaopuiki)
Budget to Cut Aid to Poor and Disabled
How to Turn Your Concerns into Law
Planning and Transportation Committee (Pearl Johnson)
City Council Dislikes Sunshine Law (Pearl Johnson)

Budget will cut aid to poor and disabled

According to the Washington Post (October 26), the House Ways and Means Committee today will begin drafting legislation that would save about $8 billion over five years. To do it, Chairman Bill Thomas (R-Calif.) would cut back federal aid to state child-support enforcement programs, limit federal payments to some foster care families, and cut welfare payments to the disabled.

Ways and Means officials said the child-support proposal would change the federal matching rate for child-support enforcement from a 66 percent share to a 50 percent share that would be more in line with other federal and state partnerships, saving $3.8 billion through 2010. But the Congressional Budget Office estimated that the cut in child-support enforcement aid would result in a five-year drop in collections of $6 billion -- and nearly $17 billion over 10 years.

Equally controversial will be cuts to the growth of Medicaid under consideration in the House Energy and Commerce Committee. The committee's plan, to be formally drafted tomorrow, would slice $3 billion over five years from Medicaid prescription-drug payments and more than $6 billion from other parts of the program.

Under another proposal, states for the first time would be allowed to charge some Medicaid-eligible children premiums and co-payments. Even children well under the poverty line could be hit with drug and emergency-room co-payments. The states would also be freed from early diagnostic programs currently required under Medicaid for children just over the poverty line

The full story can be read at www.washingtonpost.com

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