House Republican Budget Cuts Would Threaten Landmark Bipartisan Mental Health and MET Hospitals Settlements

As Ray Burton Welcome Center is Dedicated, House Republicans Also Plan to Cut Funding for Welcome Centers and Travel and Tourism Promotion

CONCORD, NH – During Tuesday’s House Finance Division III meeting, House Republicans’ devastating cuts to the Department of Health and Human Services budget continued as they proposed cuts that would threaten two landmark bipartisan settlements.

The state’s landmark mental health and MET hospital settlements were negotiated in good faith and passed by bipartisan majorities in the New Hampshire House and Senate. These bipartisan settlements protected the state’s budget, ensuring that Granite Staters have access to critical services while maintaining fiscal responsibility.

By proposing to underfund the mental health settlement by 20% ($29 million) and by cutting hospital uncompensated care reimbursements by $31 million from what was agreed to in the MET settlement, House Republicans would threaten both landmark settlements and undermine critical services for Granite Staters.

On Tuesday at the same time the Ray Burton Welcome Center on I-93 was dedicated, House Republicans continued moving forward with their “plan” to cut funding for welcome centers and slash the budget for travel and tourism in half.

“Undoing our landmark bipartisan mental health and MET settlements would not only undermine critical services for NH citizens but would also threaten our state’s budget and our bond rating,” said Representative Cindy Rosenwald, House Deputy Democratic Leader and a member of the House Finance Committee. “From jeopardizing our ability to maintain a safe transportation infrastructure to repealing health care expansion and undoing landmark settlements, House Republicans’ misguided proposals would reverse much of our bipartisan progress of the last two years.”

“Tourism is New Hampshire’s second largest industry, supporting roughly 68,000 jobs, yet House Republicans’ backward proposals would slash funding for travel and tourism in half and cut funding for welcome centers,” said House Democratic Leader Stephen Shurtleff. “Our people, businesses and economy will pay for these shortsighted cuts just like we did as a result of the last Bill O’Brien budget.”