“This is what happens when one of the richest and most powerful Nebraskans attempts to represent the poorest and weakest”
LINCOLN, NE – In prepared remarks for a town hall meeting on development disabilities tonight in Norfolk, Bob Krist, Nebraska state senator and candidate for governor, says extreme budget cuts by Gov. Pete Ricketts is risking the well being of the state’s most vulnerable citizens.
"There are facts and evidence that the Governor's line-item veto of $56.5 million for groups that serve the elderly and people with developmental disabilities is now having damaging effects. These were not Legislative actions, these were line-item vetoes by the Governor aimed specifically at a very vulnerable population,” Krist said.
Last spring, lawmakers, including Krist, fell three votes short of the support needed to restore $32.4 million in funding Ricketts vetoed, most of which went to Medicaid service providers including NorthStar Services, host of Thursday’s meeting in Norfolk.
NorthStar relies on state funding to provide employment services for people with developmental disabilities, such as Down syndrome or fetal alcohol syndrome, and day services for the elderly. It serves 257 residents and provides 500 jobs in northeast Nebraska.
"I don't understand recent comments and claims made by Department of Health and Human Services that they have been working with providers to make sure no funds or services would be cut. There are reductions in services across the board, and when you get out in the D and D community as I have, I'm seeing it," Krist said.
"Governor Ricketts, if that's the way you want to run our State - balancing the budget on the backs of those who most need these services - at least be truthful about the consequences," Krist said.
“This is what happens when one of the richest and most powerful Nebraskans attempts to represent the poorest and weakest Nebraskans,” he said.
Recognized as a fierce defender of the most vulnerable of Nebraska’s citizens, Sen. Krist is the former president of the Madonna School in Omaha, whose mission is to serve students and adults with cognitive and developmental disabilities to become as independent as possible. He was named the Outstanding Citizen of the Year by the Nebraska Association of Behavioral Health Organizations in 2013.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 9, 2017
Contact: Dan Parsons, (402) 580-2321