Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Fiscal Cliff Averted: I/DD Community Says New Battle Awaits

    The New Year's Day deal averting the "fiscal cliff" lays the groundwork for more painful struggles in Washington over taxes, spending and debt in the next few months.
     While the newly passed legislation does not include any cuts in benefits for the entitlement programs, this issue is expected to take center stage in the coming weeks as it becomes a bargaining chip in the upcoming debt ceiling negotiations. In the first three months of 2013, additional legislation will be necessary to address other aspects of the nation’s fiscal situation, including an increase in the debt ceiling, the end of the 2-month extension of the sequester (automatic cuts), and appropriations for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2013.
     These deadlines will set the stage for additional negotiations between the Congress and the White House. There will be mounting pressure to generate additional revenue and to cut the entitlement programs (Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare) as well as the discretionary programs (such as housing, education, employment) that people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) rely on to live in the community. The Arc will remain actively involved in seeking a balanced approach to deficit reduction by advocating for increased revenue and protecting critical spending programs for our constituents.
     Learn more about the fiscal cliff deal at The Arc’s Center on Budget and Policy Priorities website and view statement on the Arc US blog.
(Courtesy of The Arc United States, 1/3/2013)