Congressman Chris Collins says an amendment to the American Health Care Act that he introduced could save Erie County taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. And County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw released a plan Tuesday on how to spend the savings.
According to a written statement issued by Collins, a Clarence Republican, his proposal would "bar federal reimbursements for state Medicaid funds raised from local governments" - saving Erie County taxpayers more than $203 million. If Congress goes along and eliminates the unfunded mandate, County Comptroller Mychajliw says, local homeowners should get a 75 percent property tax cut.
And the remaining share, Mychajliw says, should be invested in infrastructure.
"So our 2017 spending on roads is $36 million. My plan would actually increase that by $51 million to a total of $87.4 million," Mychajliw said.
But Governor Andrew Cuomo says, the Collins' Amendment is "cheap politics."
In New York City Tuesday, Cuomo said, it cuts another $2.3 billion from Medicaid, which he says, brings the total cost of repealing the Affordable Care Act in New York to nearly $7 billion.
"You will literally decimate the healthcare industry. We've been working very hard in Upstate New York to bring back the economy. You have no economy without a healthcare industry," Cuomo said.
The proposed cut to healthcare, Cuomo says, is just the beginning of a "declared war on New York state." Mychajliw said, that Albany can make up for the proposed cuts to Medicaid by tightening its belt.