Washington, D.C.– An economic analysis by the Associated Press has found Yuma County the second most economically stressed in the nation, in part due to recent state-level mandated cutbacks in the health care sector, according to an article in today’s Yuma Sun. The article – partially quoted below – points out that based on the AP’s formula, a county is “stressed” when its score on the stress index exceeds 11, and Yuma County’s is 29.66.
According to the article:
Gov. Jan Brewer has said she needs to cut more than 150,000 AHCCCS recipients from the program, despite the fact that doing so would cost the state approximately $1 billion in federal matching funds in the first year alone, according to the Arizona Republic. A recent economic analysis has found the Brewer plan would cost the state 30,000 jobs and $2.5 billion in gross state product the first year. Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva has made repeated efforts to stop Arizona’s Medicaid recipients from losing their health insurance and called for the state Children’s Health Insurance Program to be restored.
“The best way to get our economy back on track is to put people back to work – period,” Grijalva said. “We succeed as a community when everyone is working, paying taxes, reducing their reliance on social safety nets, and making regular payments on their homes. I don’t know why most lawmakers won’t talk about job creation, but I’m going to keep raising the point until it sinks in.”
Grijalva highlighted the contrast between these state-level austerity measures – coupled with a $538 million corporate tax cut package Brewer approved in February – with the positive contributions to the Southern Arizona economy made by the Recovery Act and other federal activities, including:
An independent analysis has found that Medicaid provides critical health coverage for more than 250,000 low-income seniors and people with disabilities in Arizona, most of whom would otherwise go without health care. A February state-by-state scorecard released by the Commonwealth Fund ranked Arizona 49th in the quality of children’s health care nationwide.
The full Yuma Sun article is available at http://www.yumasun.com/news/county-71556-stressed-yuma.html.