Golden, Malliotakis Fight to Protect Local Senior Centers

Martin J. Golden

February 10, 2011

Senator Marty Golden (R,C–Brooklyn) and Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R,C – Brooklyn, Staten Island) recently held a press conference denouncing proposed cuts in Governor Cuomo’s executive budget that would result in the painful closure of Brooklyn senior centers. The governor’s reductions in Title XX would re-route funding that traditionally supports senior centers to other programs, unfairly targeting our senior population.

Senator Marty Golden, a member of the Senate Aging Committee stated, “We all know how important a neighborhood senior center is to the health, well-being and livelihood of a senior citizen here in New York. That is why I join with my colleague, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, in a fight against these proposed state cuts that would significantly reduce funding for seniors.

Golden continued, “The planned reductions proposed by Governor Cuomo would eliminate more than $25 million from New York City senior centers and force more than 100 centers to close. If approved, the true meaning of those numbers translate to 5,000 seniors that will be abandoned and left without food, case management, and the socialization that senior centers offer. We cannot let this happen and I will oppose any reductions in funding for these programs.”

“The governor’s proposed spending plan would redirect 25 percent of funding for our senior centers to pay for state mandated services,” said Malliotakis, a member of the Assembly Committee on Aging. “This could force the city to close a third of its senior centers. Time and time again, state government tries to take from our senior citizens what they have worked their entire lives to earn in an effort to cover other areas of spending. This latest attempt to balance the budget on the backs of seniors is simply unacceptable and cannot be considered as a way to construct a state spending plan.”

“With such a high volume of elderly citizens in Bay Ridge and throughout Brooklyn, our communities would be particularly devastated by the closure of senior centers,” said Malliotakis. “The people of Brooklyn rely on these establishments to lead healthy and prosperous lives. Our seniors have built our community from the ground up through a lifetime of compassion and service, and they deserve every opportunity to benefit from their hard work.”

Also in attendance was Bobbie Sackman, Director of Public Policy for the Council of Senior Centers and Services of New York City. “The Cuomo Administration’s proposal to cut $25 million from Title XX funds would result in the closure of 110 senior centers in New York City,” said Sackman. “If the Governor is successful, over 7,000 seniors will show up at their senior centers on April 1st, only to find them shuttered.”