The Ottumwa Courier

Southeast Iowa

April 23, 2013

Loebsack eyes funding cuts during CIS visit

OSKALOOSA — Dave Loebsack, Democratic U.S. Congressman from Iowa’s 2nd District, visited Crisis Intervention Services in Oskaloosa Monday.

Loebsack met with staff members there and listened to concerns related to state and federal funding, among other issues.

After meeting with those from CIS, Loebsack toured the facility, as well.

Loebsack said there are “a lot of cutbacks” at the federal and state level. He said this would have an impact on CIS’s ability to help those who have been hurt by sexual crime.

“It should interest all of us because when we can’t deal effectively and help those folks, that’s going to effect all of us in one way or another,” said Loebsack.

Loebsack said Oskaloosa is an important part of the 2nd District, which includes 24 counties.

“I’m very interested in visiting programs like this — hearing about the cuts, the sequester cuts, and the other cuts in funding to these organizations and I’m going to do what I can on a personal level to help fill in that gap.”

It will take more than individuals to “fill in that gap,” according to Loebsack. Government funding must be restored, as well, he said. 

“It’s just that we do need to balance the budget, but, as far as I’m concerned, we should not be balancing the budget on the backs of the least powerful and those who are going to be hurt by these kinds of cuts.”

Medicaid expansion is also important for Loebsack.

“It’s very important for mental illness, in particular mental health because that covers folks as far as mental health is concerned and it covers the tens of thousands of Iowans right now who do not have health insurance,” Loebsack said.

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