Senator Brouk votes to pass Senate One House Budget that emphasizes healthcare, education funding

Senator Brouk speaks at budget hearing

ALBANY, NY - Today, Senator Samra Brouk and her colleagues in the Senate Democratic Majority passed their One House Budget resolution that would fully fund public education via Foundation Aid, increase Medicaid funding to hospitals and nursing homes, and take meaningful action to make the Rochester area more equitable, affordable and supportive for working families and individuals.

As a direct result of Senator Brouk’s advocacy, the Senate “One House” Budget (R.1952) includes funding to expand youth access to mental health care, create a community doula expansion grant program, and launch the first ever Daniel’s Law pilot program. 

“The Senate One House budget reflects the needs and values of working families across our community,” said Senator Samra Brouk. “We are taking action to ensure that our schools have appropriate resources, that quality healthcare is affordable and accessible to those who need it, and that parents and families have the support they need to raise healthy and happy families. As negotiations toward a final budget continue, I remain committed to securing meaningful investments that allow upstate communities like Rochester and Monroe County to thrive.”

Prioritizing Health & Wellness

The Senate One House Budget delivers long overdue resources and investments that will allow our neighbors to access the health and mental health care they deserve. Brouk chairs the Senate Committee on Mental Health and is an active member of the Health Committee. The Senate One House Budget:

  • Adds $2 million for Daniel’s Law Pilot Crisis Intervention Program grants (related to Brouk S2398)
  • Advances language to create a youth telehealth mental health services program (Brouk S8146
  • Provides a 3.2% cost of living increase for the mental health and human services workforce (related to Brouk S1291)
  • Invests $8.3 million for the Dwyer Peer to Peer Veterans Peer Support Program
  • Adds $1.6 billion statewide for Medicaid reimbursement rate increases:
    • 10 percent total Medicaid rate increase for hospitals 
    • 9.5 percent total Medicaid rate increase for nursing homes, assisted living providers and hospice services 

 “New Yorkers of all ages deserve a mental health system that is well staffed, accessible, and equipped to meet their needs during their most vulnerable moments,” said Senator Samra Brouk. “The Senate One House Budget takes us closer to the full funding and passage of Daniel’s Law, helps our young people access mental health support, and ensures that our workforce and other providers are compensated fairly for their work.”

Caring for Children and New & Growing Families

As the parent of a toddler, Senator Brouk knows that young people and their families need support now more than ever. This is especially true in Rochester, where nearly half of all children are growing up in poverty. Senator Brouk was proud to support a Senate One House Budget that:

  • Accepts the proposal to allow children up to the age of 6 to remain continuously enrolled in Medicaid or Child Health Plus without redetermining their eligibility annually (Brouk S7747
  • Establishes a community doula expansion grant program (Brouk - S7779B)
  • Establishes a study on doula friendly spaces in medical settings (Brouk - S7780)
  • Advances $12 million for the Mothers and Infants Lasting Change Allowance (MILC), a pilot program that will provide 1,000 new mothers a cash allowance during the final three months of pregnancy which will continue until the child born of that pregnancy reaches 9 months of age. 
  • Creating a working families tax credit that would provide a $550 credit per child to single taxpayers making under $75,000 and married taxpayers filing jointly making $130,000. This would replace the existing Empire State Child Credit, providing a more generous credit. 
  • Investing $220 million in child care through additional support for the establishment of a permanent Workforce Retention Grant program, for a total of $500 million. Funds will provide child care employees with an annual salary enhancement.

“A family’s income should not determine their ability to obtain health coverage, have a safe and healthy birth, or obtain childcare,” said Senator Samra Brouk. “This budget proposal recognizes that when we start families off with a strong start, we set future generations up for success. I look forward to continuing to advocate for these policies as we enter final budget negotiations.”

Investing in Education and Upstate Communities

Senator Samra Brouk has proven herself to be a strong and active voice for Upstate New York and the Greater Rochester community, and ensuring that our young people receive the education they deserve. As a result of her advocacy, the Senate One House Budget:

  • Included a $25M one time investment in the City of Rochester to correct for decades of underinvestment
  • Funded a study to ensure that the state’s municipal funding formula equitably serves Upstate communities 
  • Rejected all proposed changes to Foundation Aid, including the elimination of “hold harmless” provisions
  • Invested $747 million statewide in school aid, providing a minimum 3 percent increase for all school districts
  • Secured $150 million statewide for Universal Pre-K

“Ensuring the long-term vitality of Upstate New York and the Greater Rochester Area requires not only to call for the municipal funding that our communities deserve, but to demand the resources that our next generation of Rochesterians need to become educated, well-rounded adults,” said Senator Samra Brouk. “As the mother of a child who will soon enter our public school system, I see firsthand the need for these resources in our community. I’m proud to work alongside my colleagues in the Greater Rochester Majority Delegation to fight for what our region deserves.”