Sequester Could Cut Missoula Aging Service’s Budget by 50 Percent
The sequester is scheduled to occur as February comes to a close. For some agencies, the cutbacks will be minimal, but for others, like Missoula Aging Services, the cutbacks will be significant.
Missoula Aging services Chief Financial Officer Debbie Lester says that, "just under 50% of our funding is federal funding and we serve Misosula and Ravalli counties. In the two counties combined we stand to lose about $127,000 in federal funds and that will have an impact on an awful lot of programs."
The cuts will effect a variety of services, including the popular Meals on Wheels program.
Lester says part of the problem is the way the cuts are handed down. "If we were just told, 'you're going to lose 127,000' and we were allowed to figure out how we would manage that that would be a good thing. However, each different program takes a specific cut and we don't have a lot of leeway on how to manage it."
Lester is hopeful that if the sequester does go through, that the Montana state legislature will step up and give Missoula Aging Services the funds it needs to keep its programs afloat.