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Congresswoman Corrine Brown Calls on GOP to Act on Balanced Plan to Avert Automatic Spending Cuts


Location: Washington, DC

Today, a new report was released by the Obama Administration on the harm that automatic spending cuts scheduled to occur on Friday would cause in the state of Florida. Congresswoman Brown renewed her call for House Republicans to take swift action on a balanced plan to stop these automatic spending cuts that would threaten our economy, as well as a range of vital services for children, seniors, small businesses, and our men and women in uniform.

Congresswoman Brown made the following statement:

"Today, the Obama Administration reminded us of the damage to our fragile economy and to the safety and security of families here in Florida that the drastic, indiscriminate, across-the-board, automatic spending cuts that will begin this Friday will cause. Whether it is children in school, seniors, college students struggling to pay for college, people looking for a job, women who are the victims of violence, or our public safety and health, this report details the damaging impact these cuts will have on the people here in Florida. Beyond a doubt, Florida residents cannot afford another self-inflicted wound from Washington.

And that is why on behalf of all Florida residents I have joined with my colleagues to call on the House Republican leadership to do what is right for our nation's economy, security and families and take action this week on a balanced plan to avert these damaging and horrible spending cuts.

To date, Senate and House Democrats have offered fair, balanced plans to avert these damaging cuts, and these proposals are built on responsible spending cuts, increased revenues, and growth with jobs. Yet Republicans have refused to work toward compromise on a plan to reduce the deficit because they refuse to ask the wealthy to pay a little more by closing tax loopholes.

With every passing day, thousands of jobs are at risk, the security of middle class families hang in the balance, and the safety of neighborhoods across the state of Florida are in jeopardy. Our nation's economy cannot afford any further uncertainty, obstruction, and delay: too much is at stake.

This new report demonstrates some of the devastating and widespread impact to local communities here in Florida:

* Teachers and Schools: Florida will lose approximately $54.5 million for primary and secondary education, putting around 750 teacher and aide jobs at risk. In addition, about 95,000 fewer students would be served and approximately 130 fewer schools would receive funding.

* Education for Children with Disabilities: Florida will lose approximately $31.1 million for about 380 teachers, aides, and staff who help children with disabilities.

* College Aid and Work-Study Jobs: Around 6,250 fewer low income students in Florida would receive aid to help them finance the costs of college and around 1,700 fewer students will get work-study jobs that help them pay for college.

* Head Start: Head Start and Early Head Start services would be eliminated for approximately 2,700 children in Florida, reducing access to critical early education.

* Military Readiness: in Florida, approximately 31,000 civilian Department of Defense employees would be furloughed, reducing gross pay by around $183.2 million in total.

* Law Enforcement and Public Safety Funds: Florida will lose about $970,000 in Justice Assistance Grants that support law enforcement, prosecution and courts, crime prevention and education, corrections and community corrections, drug treatment and enforcement, and crime victim and witness initiatives.

* Job Search Assistance: Around 78,960 fewer Florida residents will get the help and skills they need to find employment, as Florida will lose about $2.3 million in funding for job search assistance, referral, and placement.

* Child Care: Up to 1,600 disadvantaged and vulnerable children in the state of Florida could lose access to child care, which is also essential for working parents to hold down a job.

* Vaccines for Children: Around 7,450 fewer children in the state will receive vaccines for diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, whooping cough, influenza, and Hepatitis B due to reduced funding for vaccinations.

* Violence against Women Grants: Florida could lose up to $404,000 to provide services to victims of domestic violence, resulting in up to 1500 fewer victims being served.

* Nutrition for Seniors: the state of Florida would lose approximately $3.8 million in funding to help provide meals for seniors.

* Protections for Clean Air and Clean Water: Florida would lose about $5.2 million to ensure clean water and air quality, as well as prevent pollution from pesticides and hazardous waste.

* Public Health: Florida will lose approximately $1.8 million to help upgrade its ability to respond to public health threats, including infectious diseases, natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiological events. In addition, the state will lose about $5 million in grants to help prevent and treat substance abuse, resulting in around 4,500 fewer admissions to substance abuse programs. And the Florida State Department of Public Health will lose about $1.4 million, resulting in around 35,900 fewer HIV tests.

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