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ESPC Goes To Washington

Dan Neal, Equality State Policy Center

As Washington gets closer to hammering out a federal budget. Watch dog groups monitoring the process have big concerns for proposed cuts to social service programs.  Wyoming’s, Dan Neal, of the Equality State Policy Center, is in Washington this week meeting with our state’s congressional delegation.

“Its one of our concerns about these cuts is that they not be made recklessly, but rather, make sure that the programs that work and pay off long term, and that we know pay off long term, we should stick with those.”

Neal sites 44 percent cuts to Community Service Block Grants as an example. Block Grant funds support the Natrona County Community Action Partnership which disperses dollars to entities like Life Steps Transitional Housing, Healthcare for the Homeless, and various jobskills training programs.

“Any household that’s dealing with problems with their budget they look at cutting spending, that’s for sure, but they also look at ways to bring more money into the household and we’re just not seeing enough of that discussion.”

Senator Mike Enzi noted he met with many groups this week and each wants their program saved. He issued this response.

“Every spending decrease may hurt one group or another. Many of those cuts will be to programs that I have supported in the past, but the simple truth is if we don’t make cuts now, all scenarios down the road are worse than what we’re facing today.”

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