The NYSPHA Policy and Advocacy Committee is continuing to develop the full 2021 NYSPHA State Budgetary and Legislative Goals. Agenda items will be posted when available.
2021 NYSPHA State Budgetary and Legislative Goals
NYSPHA is the New York State affiliate of the American Public Health Association and serves as a statewide organization representing members from all disciplines of public health. NYSPHA’s mission is to promote and protect the public’s health through networking, professional development, advocacy and education.
NYSACHO represents the collective voice of local health departments in New York State. NYSACHO’s mission is to support, advocate for, and empower local health departments in their work to promote health and wellness to prevent disease, disability and injury throughout New York State.
NYSPHA State Budgetary Goals
In past years, NYSPHA’s budget recommendations to the Governor have included detailed recommendations for funding specific components of the public health infrastructure including topics such as supporting local health departments, chronic disease prevention, tobacco control, public water supply protection, and other issues of public health importance. Our comments have focused on the fact that public health has been underfunded traditionally, even before the current circumstances, and that opportunities to prevent disease have gone unaddressed.
However, this year the challenges presented by the COVID19 pandemic will require an innovative approach to budgeting. Therefore, NYSPHA’s budget recommendations to the Governor for his proposed 2021 Executive Budget focus on our recommendations to raise the revenue necessary to support the public health infrastructure in general, including support for the state and local health and mental health departments, and to avoid any funding reductions for health and public health programs.
NYSPHA recommended three possible sources of new revenue to avoid public health budget cuts: 1. Increase the cigarette and other tobacco taxes by $1 per pack equivalent, 2. Institute a “billionaires’ tax”, and 3. Institute a Sugar Sweetened Beverage (SSB) tax. NYSPHA has also separately endorsed the idea of a stock transfer tax.
Unfortunately, the proposed NYS Executive Budget for 2021-2022 did not incorporate any of these new sources of revenue and numerous public health lines in the State Department of Health’s budget were reduced by as much as 100% for some programs. The Article 6 General Public Health Work Program reimbursement rate for New York City for expenditures over the base grant was reduced by 50%, a loss of over $17 million for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Read PDF here.
NYSPHA has joined a coalition of public health organizations in New York State to call upon the state legislature to restore these cuts to public health programs. See the attached sign on letter
NYSPHA State Legislative Goals
1. Tobacco-related issues.
2. Allow pharmacists to provide all recommended adult immunizations
For the second year in a row, Governor Cuomo included a provision in proposed 2021-2022 executive budget to expand pharmacists’ authority to administer all immunizations recommended for adults by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (Sections 3-4 of Part P of the Health and Mental Hygiene 2021- 2022 proposed Executive Budget, (S.2507/A.3007). Although this provision was not included in the final budget, similar legislation has been proposed (S. 4807 Stavisky/A.6476 Hyndman ). This legislation would allow pharmacists to provide vaccines for human papilloma virus (the cause of cervical cancer), hepatitis A and B, measles, mumps and rubella, in addition to COVID-19.
At this time of great stress on the healthcare system due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is imperative to have all components of the system able to provide life-saving vaccines. We strongly urge the Legislature to pass S. 4807 Stavisky/A.6476 Hyndman this session to proactively address this public health imperative.
Read the memo of support here.
The NYSPHA Policy and Advocacy Committee will continue to update the 2021 State Budgetary and Legislative Goals as new issues arise. The current version of the full 2021 NYSPHA State Budgetary and Legislative Goals can be viewed here.
Read NYSPHA's 2021 budget recommendations letter to Governor Cuomo here.
To read last year's (2020) Legislative Agenda, click here