Thursday, November 17, 2016
|King County Executive|
President-elect Trump and Republican leaders in Congress have made policy statements regarding the Affordable Care Act (ACA), domestic programs, environmental priorities and infrastructure spending.
At a news briefing following a meeting of Executive Constantine’s cabinet, four department leaders outlined key federal programs:
- Patty Hayes, Director, Public Health – Seattle and King County
- Adrienne Quinn, Director, Department of Community and Human Services
- Christie True, Director, Department of Natural Resources and Parks
- Rob Gannon, General Manager, King County Metro
Among the top concerns for King County are:
- More than 200,000 people in King County could be at risk for losing their health insurance if the ACA is repealed or diminished.
- Demand for public health clinics could rise. Last year, 90,000 King County residents accessed basic health services through 10 Public Health Centers and about 20 satellite operations.
- Mental health and substance abuse funding contained in the ACA could be reduced.
- Funding for Department of Housing and Urban Development could be reduced, impacting homelessness programs.
- Federal coal leasing programs could allow for more coal extraction. Federal agencies could allow more oil and coal terminals.
- Environmental policies could change to open more coastlines and wildlife refuges to oil and natural gas drilling.
- Increased infrastructure spending may provide opportunities to fix local roads and bridges, including the 41 King County bridges considered functionally obsolete and 16 that are structurally deficient.
“A lot gets said in the heat of a very long campaign. If we are to take President-elect Trump and the Republicans who control Congress at their word, there is reason to be concerned,” said Executive Constantine.
“We are an innovative, prosperous region that embraces pluralism and diversity. The next Congress and the White House need to know what’s at stake for our region. Whatever happens in Washington, DC, our region will continue to move forward, and outward to the rest of the world, building a welcoming community, a strong economy, and a healthy environment.”