Dear Governor Dayton,
I am an AFSCME 151 Union Member, a Ramsey County employee and a very concerned Minnesota citizen. Please veto the Health & Human Service bill presented to you by our State Legislature.
As an employee of Ramsey County and AFSCME 151 Union member, our work volume has increased dramatically with more and more clients seeking services. Our caseload has increased by 18,000 since the summer of 2008 (I can't use a specific month because I don't have it). Currently, we are struggling to meet their needs and the needs of new applicants seeking our help and resources to survive. Reducing their benefits or changing the qualification standards would be unreasonable considering the current economy. Furthermore, we would be victimizing the most vulnerable: our elders, our families in poverty and the disabled. That's not something I want to see happen.
As a concerned citizen, it is vital staffing at both the state, city and county levels have realistic budget requirements to meet the growing population of people seeking resources. Reducing any of these budgets is not fiscally responsible. With the cuts in the Health Human Service bill, staffing will be reduced. This will impact our unemployment, individuals not receiving their benefits in a timely manner, individuals being delayed in knowing whether they qualify for various benefits, etc.
With you authorizing 100,000 citizens back on Medical Assistance, it makes no fiscal or personal responsibilty in allowing the Human Services bill to reverse the decision you made as one of your first Governor decisions.
We continue to support you in taxing the rich of the state. They need to pitch in during these challenging economic times.
An AFCME gathering has been scheduled for May 23 to hold our legislature accountable for mis-handing their time. They have failed to work with you and create a bi-partisan environment where the budget could easily have been negotiated worked out by the normal end of business on May 23. It is frustrating to see our elected officials expecting more money as a special session will pay them even more when they have failed to do their job.
(NOTE TO MARY: BORROW SOMETHING COOL FROM THE WEBSITE TO SEND HIM about this event)
Thank you for your time and consideration,
Ramsey County employee of X years