Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Budget Buster

Well, Governor Tom Corbett, it's nice to see that the education of our children and the health and well-being of our poor are important to you.  Less important to you than making sure your top-level staffers are well-paid.  Less important than prison inmates.  Less important than big business. 

I might vomit.

I am physically repulsed at the thought that 1500 jobs in the Department of Public Welfare are being cut.  At a time when more and more people need Supplemental Security Income and Medical Assistance.  As it is, it takes 30-60 days for a Medical Assitance application to be processed and approved.  Cut 1500 jobs, and it's going to take 3 months.  That's unacceptable.  We have patients sitting in the hospital because they have no insurance and can't get the after-care they need.  They're stuck here, waiting for their MA application to be approved. 

I'm always sad that public welfare is always one of the first areas to get hit when budget cuts come around.  A few years ago, Governor Rendell did the same thing - cut funding to almost nothing to DPW.  Hundreds of important supportive programs had to close.  In the next breath, he was questioning why it's so hard to keep college-educated PA residents in PA.  Well, when you take our jobs away, we can't stay here to work. 

And then cuts for education?  Funding for state schools (like my alma mater, Bloomsburg University) cut by half.  Funding for state-supported schools (like my other alma mater, University of Pittsburgh) slashed.  At the rate we're going, Matt and I are going to have to save $300K to send our kids to college.  When I went to school, my tuition was $7800/year.  That included tuition and room and board.  I just checked - they're almost twice that, now.  Because funding keeps getting cut.  Penn State is $27K.  That's just gross.  Companies demand better and better-educated candidates for jobs.  They pay huge salaries to their executives "to attract better talent."  How can you have talented employees if you're not educating them? 

This hurts my heart.

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