Long, cold Winter ahead for some in NC

Thanks to the GOP's budget-cutting fetish:

The Crisis Intervention Program is a federally funded program that helps low-income families pay their heating bills in times of crisis. This year, the county received less money from the program. Funds were cut from $1.3 million to just less than $870,000.

Because of the reduction, the state came out with revised recommended guidelines for who would qualify for help.

Of course it did. Instead of looking for funds elsewhere, NC Republicans just shake their heads like they have no idea why this happened.


ALEC loves...

....them some sadists.....

Some depressing stats

The word "slash" doesn't even cover it:

According to Larry Dawson, chair of NEADA, “the impact of these cuts were especially severe, in light of the close to $1.8 billion that has been cut from the program since FY 2010, reducing total funding from $5.1 billion to $3.32 billion. States are not able to make up the cuts in the program’s purchasing power let alone the additional cuts that come with a second sequester”

Key Facts from the NEADA Survey:

•As a direct result of the sequester, the total number of households receiving home heating assistance declined by 194,000 from 6.9 million in FY 2013 to about 6.7 million in FY 2012 and for those receiving cooling assistance declined by about 104,000 from 1.1 million to about 996,000.

•Cuts enacted since FY 2010, have reduced the program’s purchasing power from 52.5% of the cost of home heating to 44% during last year’s winter heating season and the number of households served from about 8.1 million to 6.7 million.

•The sequester cuts were on top of severe cuts in the program that had been enacted since FY 2010. Since FY 2010, total funding was reduced from $5.1 billion to $3.47 billion in FY 2012 and then further reduced by the sequester to $3.3 billion in FY 2013. The impact has been significant. Total number of households receiving assistance has declined by 17% from about 8.1 million in FY 2010 to 6.7 million in FY 2013.

•The outlook for the coming winter is especially grim since the Energy Information Administration has projected that the average cost of home heating will increase from $922 to $977. For those using natural gas, home heating costs are expected to increase by 13% and the overall average increase is projected to be about 6%. As such, the purchasing power of the program will be further reduced from 44% to 41.5% even before the impact of a potential second sequester.

The only way to reverse this is for Democrats to take over the US House again, so a real budget can be passed. And the only way that is going to happen, thanks to gerrymandering, is an extremely aggressive public education campaign that can cut through the Republican propaganda surrounding government assistance programs and show the voters just how much unnecessary pain and suffering is involved with these deep cuts.

If you have a video camera and you know a family that is being affected by cuts (state or federal), please take the time to document their situation. You don't have to be a film student or credentialed journo to do this, you just need to ask a few questions and let the camera do the rest of the work. And if you're wondering who will publish said video, you're already here.