Federal budget debates remain contentious despite nearly $5 trillion in deficit reduction being achieved in recent years. Over three-fourths of this has occurred through spending cuts, particularly in discretionary programs such as those of the Older Americans Act, Falls Prevention, Housing Counseling, Section 202 Housing for the Elderly, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), Senior Corps, and the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG).
Protecting vulnerable seniors
Reining in the federal budget is important to our nation’s economic future and requires shared sacrifice in spending reductions and increased revenues.
But program cuts should not be made at the expense of economically disadvantaged seniors and other vulnerable Americans. Due to the recent economic downturn, more seniors than ever need assistance and support to make ends meet.
Funding for seniors programs, including the OAA, is a cost-effective investment. Empowering seniors to remain healthy and economically secure in their own homes and communities reduces spending on more costly entitlement programs.
Every $1 provided to the aging services network also is leveraged by nearly $3 in non-federal support.
Cuts to Medicare and Medicaid that would increase out-of-pocket costs are something vulnerable seniors simply cannot afford.
- Aging Program Funding Table. See a table of proposals for aging program funding for FY14 through FY17.
- Issue Brief: Aging Services. Issue brief outlining the rationale for FY17 investments in services for older adults.
- Issue Brief: Falls Prevention Funding. Issue brief outlining the rationale of the Falls Free® Coalition for $10 million in funding for falls prevention in FY17.
- Issue Brief: Chronic Disease Self-Management Education (CDSME) Funding. Issue brief outlining NCOA’s rationale for $16 million in funding for CDSME in FY17.
- Issue Brief: State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) Funding. Issue brief outlining NCOA’s rationale for $59.4 million for SHIP in FY17.
- Leadership Council of Aging Organization (LCAO) letters to House and Senate Appropriations Committee leadership advocating for FY17 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations for aging services.
- Sen. Sanders’ FY17 OAA letter to appropriators signed by 30 Senators.
- News: See President Obama’s final budget request for aging services.
- CBPP Blog: Budget Deal Already Paid for the 2017 Sequestration Relief.
- CBPP Report: Low-Income Programs Not Driving Nation’s Long-Term Fiscal Problem.
- White House Budget Request Fact Sheet on Supporting Older Americans. Read the White House’s summary of FY17 Budget Request proposals regarding older adults.
- Administration for Community Living Budget Request. See ACL’s budget documents for FY17.
- HHS Budget in Brief. Review the FY17 budget summaries for the Department of Health and Human Services.
- Budget Request Overview and Agency Details. Review various summaries of the FY17 request and details for each federal agency.
- Good news: Congress protects and invests in seniors in final FY16 funding deal. Learn about the cuts that were avoided and the increases won.
- CBPP Report: 2016 Appropriations Placed Low Priority on Low-Income Programs; Better Priorities Needed for 2017
- Urge Congress to invest in aging services.
- Share your story about how looming cuts and/or lack of investments will affect seniors in your community.
Leadership Council of Aging Organizations (LCAO)
This coalition of 72 national aging organizations continues to weigh in on several aspects of the budget debate with issue briefs, fact sheets and correspondence to Congressional and Administration leadership.
Center on Budget & Policy Priorities (CBPP)
CBPP provides information about the budget process, as well as analyses of proposals, with a focus on the impacts to programs and services for low- and moderate-income families and individuals.
Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC)
The BPC actively promotes bipartisan policymaking, and its Economic Policy Project (EPP) focuses on federal debt, deficits, and budgeting.
Effects of the Sequester