Thursday, July 21, 2011

Riley Calls on Assembly Republicans to Join Democrats in Appealing to Governor to Restore Funding for Nursing Homes & Specialty Care Units

(Trenton) - Assemblywoman Celeste Riley on Thursday echoed the sentiments of her colleague across the aisle, Assemblyman Joe Malone, and called on Republican legislators to join the Assembly Democrats in appealing to Governor Christie to restore vital cuts to nursing homes and specialty care facilities.

"This is an issue that touches all of our lives," said Riley (D-Salem/Cumberland/Gloucester).  "I am moved by the testimony I heard today and trust that all of my colleagues are equally sensitive to the pleas of our elderly and those with special needs.  Their safety and well-being is not something that should be sacrificed in order to balance the budget."

Riley took part in the Assembly Budget Committee hearing today which heard from a number of constituents, first hand, on the impact that Governor Christie's budget cuts are having on nursing homes and specialty care facilities.

The Democratic budget passed by the legislature had restored the $25 million that the Governor's original budget cut from nursing homes.  However, through his line-item veto power, the Governor again removed the $25 million, a move that will now cost nursing homes $50 million because it triggers a loss in federal matching funds.  The cut funding for Special Care Nursing Facilities by $4.652, which will impact 29 facilities, including four that serve children exclusively.

"Assemblyman Malone is confident that appealing directly to the Governor's Office is the most productive means for addressing this issue so I ask all of my colleagues to join me in appealing to the Governor for the restoration of these cuts so that seniors and the disabled can continue to remain in quality homes that afford them the best care," added Riley.

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