To The Daily Sun,
There were probably 500 people waiting to testify against the House Republican's budget at the Senate Budget Committee hearing that overflowed the chambers at the Legislative Office Building last Tuesday.
Many of the speakers offered heart-rending stories of children lost to drug addiction and begging for treatment beds. After being told that the waiting period for a treatment bed for her addicted son was weeks long, one mother described her experience of locking herself in his bedroom with him while he detoxed. She described the vomiting, crying, begging, and shaking and her worry that he might die in graphic detail.
Many talked about how devastating the cuts to services to the developmentally disabled will be. One, young man, who testified on his own behalf, asked how he will be able to work if he doesn't have the assistance of the area agency that has provided so much support and assistance to him in the past.
And, yet others talked about how much they personally benefited from services to the mentally ill. One fellow described his lifelong struggle with schizophrenia that saw him living for years in and out of the hospital but that with help from community mental health centers has found success in employment, marriage, and has a child on the way. There were even two police chiefs who thought it worthwhile to wait to testify against the cuts to domestic violence programs.
And, you know who else opposes that budget? The Business and Industry Association which represents more than 400 leading companies throughout the state that employ 86,000 New Hampshire residents argued in favor of lower business taxes and increased funding for tourism, renewable energy, the department of environment services, and higher education. And, they support Medicaid expansion because it will mean a healthier work force. How about that?
Look closely at how your representatives in Concord voted on that cruel and shortsighted budget.
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