Meals on Wheels Responds to Budget Blueprint


Good news for us, though. "No one wants to cut anything", told the CNN panel, "And I think that was the most revealing thing, as it often is, that we can not have a grown-up conversation about actually making priorities in government".

The federal government does provide significant funding for Meals on Wheels, but it doesn't come from the CDBG. As a part of his draft, the President recommended eliminating the Community Development Block Grant, funding that is used to support Meals on Wheels and other programs here in the Valley.

"This is a much more meaningful ministry than I ever could have imagined,"says Terry Herzberg, Meals on Wheels volunteer". Meals on Wheels relies heavily on donations.

The cuts would take away $3 billion from Community Development Block Grants. "We are getting into the Easter month when not so many people are willing to give", she said. Money from these programs is filtered to the states and is divvied up to help fund state contracts for social programs.

Libarkin delivers meals to people across Lansing every week.

Volunteer sign-ups also jumped, increasing by 500 percent, according to Jenny Bertolette, a spokeswoman for Meals on Wheels America.

For one branch outside of Detroit, the community block grants make up about 30 percent of their budget, Bertolette said.

Eleanor Berney, of Rochester, is one of 1,000 seniors, disabled adults and veterans in Strafford County who are helped by Meals on Wheels. Both Republican and Democratic legislators have promised to protect the Meals on Wheels program. About $600,000 of it comes from the federal government directly or through the state. A spokesman for the Office of Management and Budget declined to clarify Mulvaney's remarks in response to queries from HuffPost on Friday and Monday. "I'm nearly going door-to-door", she said.

"It's reassuring that the public has stepped up", Ellie Hollander, President and CEO of Meals on Wheels America told CNN. The Trump administration has proposed cutting the overall HHS budget by 17.9 percent, but has not yet detailed where those cuts would fall and whether they would impact the Administration for Community Living, which funds nutrition programs for the elderly, as the Washington Post's Fact Checker columnist Glenn Kessler explained.

Shea-Porter said she will look out for program participants.