Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb Agrees With Governor Paterson’s Concerns That U.S. Senate’s Health Care Bill Could Put New York’s Finances In “Critical Condition” And Cost Our State Billions

Statement From Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,I,C-Canandaigua)
December 21, 2009

“I agree with concerns recently raised by Governor Paterson that the health care bill, which will likely be enacted by the U.S. Senate later this week, has all the appearances of a ‘bad deal’ for our state and its taxpayers. The Senate Majority’s bill is projected to cost New York over $1 billion annually. Given the poor condition of our economy and next year’s looming multi-billion dollar budget deficit, the Senate Majority’s health care bill could put New York’s finances in critical condition.

With details still coming out about its 2,000-plus pages, the Senate bill is believed to contain hundreds of millions in taxpayer-financed sweeteners to states like Nebraska, while shortchanging New York basic funding for Graduate Medical Education and Disproportionate Share Hospital payments to care for the poor. The Senate version of this legislation also would force New York to either increase its contribution to the Medicaid program or eliminate coverage altogether for certain individuals, resulting in another financial hit to the Empire State.

This is why I am publicly calling on Senators Schumer and Gillibrand to put our state’s fiscal health first and stop this bad bill from becoming law. Yes, our state – and nation – needs true health care reform that puts patients first and lowers costs for all consumers. But a health care ‘deal’ that comes at the cost of millions in taxpayer-financed giveaways for other states while damaging New York’s economy and shortchanging our state its ‘fair share’ is no deal.”