Lawmakers should reject Gov. Bob McDonnell’s amendments to cut Project Discovery and services for rural senior citizens.
Legislators gave Gov. Bob McDonnell a short deadline for suggesting changes to the new state budget to minimize the half-baked proposals they would have to consider. But McDonnell still managed to compile 107 amendments for lawmakers to slog through when they convene today at the state Capitol.
A few are worthy of adoption, including a requirement that all legislators contribute to their pensions.
But McDonnell’s list is riddled with pernicious proposals that should be promptly junked.
Update: This news release from the governor’s office issued at 12:45 p.m.:
RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell has officially asked for a budget amendment to be withdrawn that would have aligned state funding for Area Agencies for the Aging with recent census numbers. Instead, funding for the agencies will continue to be allocated in the same manner as prior years.
Recent census numbers showed a smaller growth rate of Virginians in certain areas who are eligible for the types of services provided by the agencies. Using the formula that determines funding allocations, the governor’s amendment would have simply shifted a portion of the funding from areas with no or slow elderly population growth, and reallocated those funds to areas with higher growth rates. The governor’s decision to request that the amendment be withdrawn was made following input from a number of groups and care providers that a change to the existing formula to account for population shifts would have a disproportionate effect on the work done by Area Agencies in a number of Virginia communities. The governor believes these agencies do tremendous work and he supports their efforts. He is committed to ensuring they are well funded. He appreciates the information received over the past week and believes that it is in the best interest of Virginia’s seniors to keep the system in-place as it currently exists.