HOUSE 1 FY22 GOVERNOR’S BUDGET:
|Geriatric Mental Health Services Program
|Grants to Councils On Aging
|$17,000,000 + earmarks
- EMHOT BUDGET reduced by $200,000. The lateness of the final FY21 budget (GAA) prompted EOEA to curb development of new EMHOT projects and authorized disbursement of the additional $200,000 funding, allocated for FY21, between existing projects to expend by June 30th. This reduction/proposal would return annualized funding of the 7 existing projects to $100,000 with the balance retained internally at Elder Affairs.
- Governor Baker proposes 25% cut to Formula Grant that will reduce the FG to FY16 level of $9/elder/year: For the last three budget cycles we asked for level funding of $17million to maintain the Formula Grant at $12/elder and fully fund the Service Incentive Grants. For the last three fiscal years Governor Baker’s budget authorized $12/elder, but short funded the Service Incentive Grant portion of the grant by $484,875. Each year the legislature with bi-partisan/bicameral support fully funded the line item at $17million, though the legislature did add on additional earmark allocations each year. We asked for level funding over this three year cycle anticipating the largess of our FY22 request that would be compounded by the new US Census count.
As we have mentioned over the last five years to our Membership, the Legislature and the Administration and in a detailed letter addressed to the Governor, dated December 17, 2020, https://mcoaonline.com/2020/12/17/mcoa-fy22-request-to-governor-baker/ the FY22 Formula Grant would be impacted by the new 2020 US Census figures. The increase projected by the Donahue Institute/UMASS Amherst indicated that this US Census count will include up to 450,000 older adults. We calculated that an additional $6million would be needed to maintain the $12/elder Governor Baker publicly supported at the October 2017 fall conference in Danvers: “A Buck A Month” of local aid.
We knew that a full $6milllion increase was unlikely and formally asked for the needed increase to be in stages over the next 2-3 years.
But to send the Formula Grant proposal back to FY16 level/$9/elder, as the Governor has proposed, is a disappointing gut punch especially as additional demands are placed on local COAs by the state to deal with COVID. Governor Baker’s proposal of $9/elder will lower the Formula Grant allocation for most cities and towns despite the increased US Census count. Check your potential FG here https://mcoaonline.com/2020/12/04/impact-of-2020-us-census-on-the-coa-formula-grant-projections/
Governor Baker’s FY22 House 1 Message: https://budget.digital.mass.gov/govbudget/fy22/governors-message
“Today, we submit to you our Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) House 1 budget recommendation which protects core government services, provides significant support for local cities and towns, and encourages economic growth and development without raising taxes on residents, as we promote a strong, equitable recovery from the COVID-19 public health emergency”. This rings hollow to me. DPS
See website for background: provided in the letter to the Governor and to individual Legislators
|Line Item #9110-9002
|The allocation to Line Item #9110-9002 for FY19, FY20, and FY21 (3 year level funding) excluding earmarks has been $17million = $12/elder/YEAR Formula Grant and full funding of Service Incentive Grants
|If level funding at $17million for FY22 then the Formula Grant would be reduced to $9/elder/YEAR with corresponding allocation for SIG
|If an additional $2million could be allocated then the Formula Grant would only be reduced to $10/elder/YEAR with corresponding allocation for SIG
|If an additional $4million could be allocated then the Formula Grant would only be reduced to $11/elder/YEAR with corresponding allocation for SIG
|To Maintain $12/elder/YEAR Formula Grant and fully fund SIG an additional $6million is needed
Next Steps: Stay tuned – We hope that the Legislature will be more appreciative of the role of their local Councils on Aging.