Frederick believes that the cuts in certain programs will eventually end up costing the state and federal government more money, as individuals marginalized by the budget cuts would become more reliant on state and federal programs to support them.

“A lot of what we do is prevention work. For example 40 percent of the people we serve in the fuel assistance program are elderly. If they can’t afford to stay in their homes because they can’t heat it, the other options become more expensive, like moving them into assisted living,” Frederick said. “It is much more expensive to deal with homelessness than it is to pay for a small amount of weatherization and lending assistance.”

Other programs that receive a lot of federal funding include the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program, which provides assistance for food and nutrition products for low-income families and the Head Start program, which provides families with childcare and preschool education. The elimination of these programs could reduce the productivity coming from the workforce, further hurting the local economy.

“If you cut a program like Head Start, that allows families to work and if they can’t work they can’t pay taxes and they can’t move forward in their lives,” Frederick said. “We also have job training programs, working with the five local vocational schools to train people for jobs and help them get placed in jobs. Those are funded through the Community Service Block Grant and the Community Development Block Grant and those are in danger of being eliminated. These are people who are being trained to get jobs and then go out in the workforce and pay taxes. The elimination of something like that is very shortsighted.”

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