Lawmakers increasing funding for local health departments
Nick Reisman is reporting for State of Politics under budget proposals advanced by state lawmakers this week, more money would be made available to local health departments in the new fiscal year. The state Assembly's budget plan matches funding levels proposed by Gov. Kathy Hochul. At the same time, the state Senate would add additional resources to county fringe rates and backs restoration of funding to New York City's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. In the last year, local health officials called for additional resources to support local departments, which have been strained for the past two years by the COVID-19 pandemic. Sarah Ravenhall, the executive director of the New York State Association of County Health Officials said the Legislature's one-house budget has responded to the association's request for increased funding for local departments. However, officials are looking for more funding, including aid for combating lead poisoning in children. "Each year 17,000 of our children are exposed to lead, putting them at risk for developing devastating health consequences, and giving New York State the dubious distinction of having the highest number of children afflicted by lead poisoning. We can and must do better," Ravenhall said. Read the full story at nystateofpolitics [dot] com.