OFFICE OF THE EXECUTIVE
PATTISON GOVERNMENT CENTER
TROY, NEW YORK 12180
Jimino, County Executive
Phone: (518) 270-2900
NOVEMBER 6, 2003
AND KELLEHER ANNOUNCE AVAILABILITY OF “MEDICAID FACTS”
- Rensselaer County Executive Kathleen M. Jimino and Chairman of the Legislature
Neil J. Kelleher announce that a ten point list, entitled "Medicaid
Facts," is available for distribution to individuals and groups that are
interested in the impact the wide sweeping Medicaid program is having on
Rensselaer County, particularly its local property taxpayers.
am confident that when Rensselaer County residents read this list, they will
have a clearer understanding of the dilemma they are in as taxpayers," said
County Executive Jimino. "Medicaid
is by far the most expensive mandated program in the County, and for that matter
the Country. There is no argument
that it provides valuable services, but the problem remains that the local
mandated cost to County taxpayers for this program threatens to minimize the
quality of other valuable services that the County provides, and in some
instances even threatens the delivery of the services themselves.
As we deliberate during the county budget season, the local cost for
Medicaid continues to be nearly equal to the property taxes collected."
Chairman Kelleher stated, “There
is no question the biggest problem facing Rensselaer County is the issue of
Medicaid spending. The Medicaid
programs the feds and state force the County to provide are literally eating up
the County budget and creating enormous problems.”
“If we do not get the Medicaid
problem under control, every county in New York State will face huge financial
problems, and that is bad news for taxpayers,” added Kelleher.
“This is a crisis for counties.
Without reform, the problem will only grow and needed county services and
our financial stability will be threatened,” said Vice Chairwoman for Finance
list of Medicaid Facts includes:
Nationally, Medicaid is larger than Medicare in terms of dollars spent
and people served.
In New York State, spending on Medicaid is closing in on spending on
New York’s Medicaid spending is bigger than California and Texas
Putting even more financial pressure on our counties and our taxpayers,
New York State is currently spending $20 million to fund the new facilitated
enrollment initiative. Combining this program with the state’s expansion of
Medicaid has resulted in a 39% increase in the number of those eligible for
Medicaid, family health plus and child health plus programs thus far.
New York is one of only 20 states that require their counties to pay a
share of the cost of Medicaid.
Of the 20 states that mandate that their counties participate to help
finance Medicaid, New York requires the largest share from their counties…one
half of the state bill for most services.
In Rensselaer County, projected 2004 estimates indicate that our share of
our Medicaid bill has nearly doubled since 1995.
Currently, Rensselaer County’s tax collections are approximately $33
million, with Medicaid costs next year estimated to be nearly $34 million.
All counties of New York, including Rensselaer County, have absolutely no
say whatsoever in the services offered to those eligible, nor rates charged.
With Medicaid being the biggest expense by far, Rensselaer County residents pay
84 cents of every local county tax dollar toward mandated programs, leaving 16
cents for such things as the maintenance and patrolling of our roadways as well
as the operation of veteran and senior programs.
concluded her remarks by urging, "Anyone who is interested in copies of
'Medicaid Facts' for themselves, others, or community groups, can call 270-2900,
or stop by the County Office Building at 1600 7th Avenue in Troy.”