Letters to the Editor

Supports Madaro for State Representative

A message from Mary Ellen Welch, President of the East Boston Greenway Council, Airport activist, former Jeffries Point Neighborhood Association Chair, and lifelong East Boston community leader.

Dear Friends,

Because Carlo Basile has resigned as State Representative for East Boston to take a position in the Baker administration, there will be a special election on March 3rd to fill the seat. A special young man has recently announced his candidacy for State Representative. He is Adrian Madaro, the son of Debra Cave and Jacopo Madaro.

For the last couple of years Adrian has been the Chief Of Staff for Representative Basile. In that job Adrian has established himself as a strong, intelligent advocate for the people and important issues in East Boston. He has been representing Carlo Basile at community meetings responding to citizen concerns, answering questions and solving problems presented by constituents. He has volunteered as a Board member for several community organizations including the Y.M.C.A., the  Harborside Community Council, and the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center among others. As a Board Member of the organizations Adrian has helped to raise money, provide leadership and help young people, families and senior citizens.

Adrian is a graduate of the Boston Latin School and has both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Tufts University. As a Ward Fellow at Boston Latin he earned internships at City Hall, the State House and in college was an intern in Congress as well. As a result of his experience as an intern Adrian and Ernani DeAraujo established an internship for East Boston youth in honor of Judge Mario Umana. Because of his interest and involvement with the Ward Fellows Program he became a member of the Ward Fellow Advisory Board under Judge Mark Wolf.

Because of all his work in and for our community and because Adrian is a smart and committed leader, I shall work for his election as State Representative from East Boston. I hope you join me in voting for Adrian on March 3rd.

Mary Ellen Welch

Supports Deveau for State Representative

Dear Editor:

On Tuesday, March 3, East Boston has a huge decision to make in the election to replace Rep. Carlo Basile. The community is lucky to have such an impressive slate of candidates running, but I think one candidate stands out as having the most pertinent experience and ability to deliver for East Boston.

Last week, I was proud to introduce Ed Deveau at his campaign kickoff at the Orient Heights Yacht Club. I have known Ed since his days at St. Mary’s Star of the Sea Elementary School.  Since then, I’ve seen Ed’s incredible growth and countless contributions to the community. Whether it is his work with the Salesian Boys & Girls Club and Constitution Beach Association, or serving as Anthony Petruccelli’s point person for over a decade, Ed has a record of delivering for East Boston – time and time again. Ed’s commitment to this community is deep, and his experience in government is unparalleled. He is a friend, but more importantly, he is the right guy for the job.

Tony Chianca

Saint Andrew Road

Supports Ruggiero for State Representative

Dear Editor:

I am writing to explain why I have chosen to support Joe Ruggiero’s candidacy for State Representative of the First Suffolk District. This election is very important to me as a husband, a father, a homeowner and as a lifelong resident of East Boston. Joe has been an active member of our community and has dedicated his time to making a difference in the lives of our kids through coaching and mentoring. His values are our values: selflessness, honesty, loyalty, and the desire to serve. As a former staffer for Rep. Basile, I know firsthand what it takes to be a successful representative for East Boston, and I know that Joe is the right man for the job. He will work day and night for our residents, just as he has done as a volunteer, business owner, and community advocate.

My wife Lindsay and I know that Joe will be the representative we need to keep East Boston on the right track, and the perfect place to raise our family. We believe in him, and I’d ask all readers to consider voting for Joe Ruggiero for State Representative on March 3.

Michael Sulprizio

No more cuts

Dear Governor Baker,

We are writing to urge you not to impose further 9c cuts to elderly home care.

On October 19, 2014, Governor Deval Patrick made a total of $2.37 million in 9c cuts to Elder Affairs line items, including $1.52 million to home care services. Protective services, congregate housing and meals programs were also cut.

In October of 2008, Governor Patrick chose to make a total of $15.511 million in 9c cuts to the Executive Office of Elder Affairs (ELD) line items  (9110 accounts). The accounts lost 5.3% in overall funding. The impact of these cuts are still felt today in the ELD accounts, seven budget years later.

Among the programs hardest hit were the home care purchased services item, and home care case management, which lost $6.77 million. The home care line items never recovered from the 9C cuts of FY 2009. Funding in FY 2015 is roughly where it stood—or lower–than eight budgets ago in FY 2007:

Previous 9c cuts have not only affected the 28,200 elders in this program, it has resulted in lower CHIA rates for this program, since Chapter 257 rates are based largely on restrained historic levels of funding. It has also pushed up caseloads to over 100 per worker at some agencies, and depressed salary levels.

At the same time, the home care accounts have had a significant positive financial impact on the state’s bottom line by reducing spending in nursing facility appropriations. Home and community based services have dramatically changed nursing facility use by MassHealth:

Between FY 2000 and FY 2014, the number of nursing home patient days paid for by  MassHealth fell by 4,500,000 days (-34.4%).  In FY 15, the median cost of  a MassHealth SNF patient day  is $189.64. The costs avoided from 4.5 million fewer patient days is $853.38  million. This “home care dividend” is a smart investment, which provides the state with an immediate ROI: when we keep an elder out of a MassHealth nursing facility bed today, that same day we provide them with care in the community for less than half the cost. Home care spending also attracts more federal FFP bonuses from CMS.

For all the above reasons, we ask you not to impose further 9c cuts to the home care accounts. Our elderly clients have already paid a significant price for 9c cuts over the past seven years.

Al Norman

Mass Home Care

Michael E. Festa

AARP Massachusetts

David Stevens

Mass Councils on Aging

Carolyn Villers

Mass Senior Action Council

 Chet Jakubiak

Mass Association

Of Older Americans

Lisa Gurgone 

Home Care Aide Council

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