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Sat Sep 14, 2019, 03:37 AM

State health secretary expresses concerns about DHHS funding cuts as state budget advances

The state’s health secretary said she was disappointed by Wednesday’s surprise N.C. House vote to override Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of the state budget, saying the budget includes cuts to her department that would affect such things as restaurant inspections and child protective services.

In the statement, Dr. Mandy Cohen said the budget “harms the people of North Carolina and fails to protect basic health and safety services that millions of people take for granted.”

The state budget bill, House Bill 966, would cut $73 million from the budget of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. During budget negotiations, the cuts were removed in House Bill 555, a stopgap bill that would have provided funding to move forward with plans to change how the state handles its Medicaid program. Both bills were vetoed by Cooper. In a surprise vote Wednesday, when most Democrats were not in the chamber, the House voted to override Cooper’s vetoes of the bills, leaving in the cuts to DHHS.

“In a time of a ($896 million) surplus, this budget makes massive cuts to DHHS that will potentially impact everything from health inspections of restaurants to the safety of drinking water to child protective services.”

Read more: https://www.journalnow.com/news/elections/local/state-health-secretary-expresses-concerns-about-dhhs-funding-cuts-as/article_d97eb2f4-7047-5891-8e68-fc4df6e73fd8.html
(Winston-Salem Journal)

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