New data from the U.S. Census show the results of commitments made by Massachusetts and the nation to improving health care security for our people. The rates of health coverage have increased steadily since the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2006.
Economic Conditions of Families Better Than in Most States; At Risk From Proposed Federal Budget Cuts
Massachusetts ranks 13th for the economic well-being of children in the national KIDS COUNT rankings of the states, but continued progress could be at risk if Massachusetts loses federal funding that has been crucial to some of Massachusetts’ successes. Cuts to federally-funded poverty reduction programs such as SNAP (“food stamps”), cash assistance (TANF), housing assistance, as well as other cuts proposed in the President’s budget to employment and economic development programs could limit access to income support programs, could limit families’ access to meaningful work, and could create budget challenges at the state level. Together, these circumstances could have a measurable impact on children’s economic well-being.
Massachusetts ranks 2nd for health in the national KIDS COUNT rankings of the states. But health care achievements and future progress could be at risk if Massachusetts loses funding from the federal government that has been crucial to Massachusetts’ successes. The federal government provides critical funding for health insurance, as well as for a wide range of public and behavioral health programs. More than $10.4 billion of the state’s $44.6 billion budget comes from the federal government to help pay for health care. These funds provide essential health insurance, nutritional support for pregnant mothers and babies, crucial prevention and treatment for substance use disorders, and other protections to keep children healthy. Proposed repeal of the Affordable Care Act, dramatic cuts to Medicaid, and other proposals in the President’s budget could cut several billion dollars from the state budget within several years, and could profoundly affect Massachusetts’ ability to ensure that every child in the Commonwealth grows up healthy.
For Families Raising Children in Challenging Circumstances Federal Budget Cuts Could Make Conditions Worse
Massachusetts ranks 7th in family and community conditions for children in the national KIDS COUNT rankings of the states. Recent victories and future progress could be at risk if Massachusetts loses federal funding that has been crucial to Massachusetts for building strong and healthy family communities and shaping our children’s physical and social environments.
Massachusetts ranks 1st in education in the national KIDS COUNT rankings of the states. Recent victories and future progress could be at risk if Massachusetts loses funding from the federal government that has been crucial to Massachusetts’ successes. A large portion of the $2.5 billion in federal grant money that comes to Massachusetts outside of the state budget supports education. The President’s proposed budget that cuts federal funding could affect Massachusetts’ ability to ensure that every child in the Commonwealth grows up ready and able to learn, and that our classrooms are able to provide high-quality education on the road to college and success in life.
Since Medicaid is a partnership between state and federal governments, much of this essential health care coverage is actually paid for by the federal government. The Governor’s proposed Fiscal Year 2018 budget includes approximately $16.6 billion for MassHealth. This total (or gross amount) is approximately 37 percent of total state budget appropriations. The federal government then reimburses Massachusetts for more than half of this spending. After receiving these reimbursements, the state’s net cost for MassHealth is $8.0 billion, 24 percent of the total net budget.
Partnership in Peril: Federal Funding at Risk for State Programs Relied on by Massachusetts Residents
This paper examines the major federal funding sources that the state uses to provide access to affordable health care, help children thrive, assist low-income families, and care for veterans. In addition to describing the sources of federal funding, we examine the policy changes Congress is likely to consider that could threaten this funding and the services the funding supports. This fiscal year, one of every four dollars that supports the state’s budget comes from the federal government 2–close to $11 billion in federal funds.