AARP has set up the Illinois State Budget Hotline, toll-free at 1-888-616-3322, to connect the public directly to their legislators on this issue. According to a Marketwire press release on June 16th, AARP opposes the following cuts, specificially:
- Community Care Program slated to cut by more than half, leaving over 20,000 without the services they need to remain in their communities, subjecting them to more costly institutional care, such as nursing homes.
- Closing all four Illinois veterans' homes -- leaving over 1,000 veterans without health care and other services.
- Circuit Breaker program cut by 50% -- which helps over 270,000 older Illinoisans struggling with high Rx costs and property taxes.
- Slashing funding for the investigation of neglect and abuse in nursing homes.
- Cutting home services for the disabled -- leaving over 5,000 people with no community access to the programs that help them remain independent.
- The state cannot completely cut or tax its way out of this mess in a one year budget cycle.
- An income tax increase can't pass without some GOP support in the House as any measure would need 71 votes to pass in the House. Senate President Cullerton’s spokeswoman, Rikeesha Phelon, said the Senate President doesn’t have commitments from all 37 Senate Democrats on a tax increase.
- According to figures released by the Governor’s office: 175,000 people will lose community mental health services, dramatically increasing homelessness, institutionalization and incarceration rates.65,000 people with alcohol and substance addictions will lose treatment.