March 8, 2021
The NYS Council continues to lead a broad coalition of regional and statewide associations representing community-based healthcare providers who are advocating for a 25% set aside of funds currently held in the state’s Healthcare Transformation (HCT) account, for community-based organizations. We have been pushing two ‘same as’ bills (A264/S2531) sponsored by Assemblyman Gottfried and Senator Rivera respectively, and more recently we have been pressing for the set aside language in the bills to be added to the Assembly and Senate one-house budget bills scheduled to be released over the next week.
Please take a moment to make 2 calls to the district offices of your Assembly and Senate representatives over the next 24 hours. Call them and ask that they please make sure our set aside language is included in the Assembly and Senate one-house budget bills, to be released shortly.
With just three weeks to go for state budget negotiations, we need to step up our advocacy efforts to compel lawmakers to include language in their one house budget bills that creates a set aside of resources for community-based organizations from the state’s Healthcare Transformation (HCT) account. To date, we have had excellent feedback from central staff and lawmakers who support A264 (Gottfried) / S2531 (Rivera), ‘same as’ bills that would set aside 25% of funds from the HCT account for community-based organizations, but we need to intensify our advocacy efforts.
THIS IS THE YEAR WE GET THIS DONE!
Background: FOR ALMOST TWO DECADES, new funding/resources coming in to NYS has not been directed to the community-based healthcare system. Initiatives such as DSRIP, HEAL-NY, the Capital Re-Structuring Program, F-SHRP and the conversion of Blue Cross/Blue Shield have delivered just a sliver of the total funds available to non-institutional healthcare settings. As a result, the community-based safety net system is hanging by a thread.
The 2018 enacted state budget gave Governor Cuomo control over a new account that holds New York’s proceeds from health plan business transactions including the sale of Fidelis to Centene, and more recently the merger of CVS/Aetna, etc. A broad group of community-based organizations are calling for a set aside from future disbursements of these funds to be invested in community-based organizations that serve as the safety net for vulnerable New Yorkers. The time is now to demand fairness and equity in the distribution of these funds!
Request: Please call your Assembly and Senate representatives as well as Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins to request that the set aside language embedded in A264/S2531 be included in the Assembly and Senate one house bills.