Brooklyn, NY-Assemblyman Michael Novakhov (R-Brooklyn) voiced his support for retired municipal workers in New York City who are speaking out against changes to the Medicare system proposed by City Hall. Under these changes, people would be transferred from a public account to a privatized Medicare Advantage Plan, opponents of this move say it will limit access to health care while raising costs.
“This is unacceptable, these hard-working men and women devoted their lives to serving the people of New York, we should give them the best health care we can, not slash their benefits. What is the most disheartening, however, is the fact unions have turned their backs on these retirees and refuse to stand with them, all because they stand to financially benefit from this decision. City Hall needs to wake up and change its plans, otherwise, the Assembly will take action,” said Novakhov.
Regarding possible action by the state Assembly, Novakhov has co-sponsored a bill that would prohibit public employers from diminishing health care benefits to retirees and their dependents (A.7866). Also, in order to help the city finance the cost of keeping coverage as is, he has co-sponsored a bill that would require enhanced federal medical assistance funds to be shared with New York City (A.6218).
“I truly hope the city sees the error of its ways and changes course, but as a backup plan, I support these bills to make sure every New Yorker who is entitled to quality health care receives it. These bills would also require an audit of funds by the comptroller to make sure they are being used correctly and responsibly,” concluded Novakhov.