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By The Skanner News
Published: 01 March 2006

Gov. Ted Kulongoski on Mondayasked President George W. Bush to restore health care services for Oregonians after cuts in federal support.

Kulongoski delivered a letter to Bush asking for a renewed state-federal partnership for health care while he was attending the National Governors Association conference in Washington, D.C.

"When I signed a balanced biennial budget for Oregon in August of 2005, it was with the understanding that the longstandingpartnership between the federal government and our state to deliver human services would continue," Kulongoski said in his letter.

"However, over the last six months, we have seen a dramatic erosion of federal support at a time when our human services needs are increasing."

The letter detailed the impactoftheDeficit Reduction Act, approved earlier this year, and the proposed Bush administration budget for 2007.

Kulongoski cited three areas of concern:

• Federal match rate: The reduction of matching federal support could cost Oregon seniors and the disabled $24 million in services.

• Targeted managed care: The Deficit Reduction Act and the president's proposed budget would result in millions of lost dollars to Oregon targeted to help keep families together and move kids out of the welfare system.

• Care for the elderly and Medicaid: Tax reductions in the proposed budget mean more than $45 million a year will be cut from nursing homes and Medicaid.

— The Associated Press

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