The first casualty of any budget war is children. New York State is currently making each and every employee prove that each and every child getting healthcare on the state plan actually and legally belongs to a state employee.

Sure, that might sound like good government fiscal policy, except that in these dire economic times, healthcare is actually being taken away from children that were previously “approved” as eligible by the state’s negligence in not really caring if parents proved legal dominion over their claimed children or not.

New York State will pay one way or the other — either in sponsored healthcare or in child welfare — so what difference does this new dunning policy really make in the end except to waste taxpayer money in this illegitimate child witch-hunt.

Perhaps more disturbing than New York State putting employee child healthcare on notice is the want of some public school districts across the nation to bump yellow buses out of service — even though children are safer on a school bus than walking to school or being driven to the campus by a parent:

About 23 percent of school districts surveyed by the American Association of School Administrators say they are reducing or eliminating school transportation for the coming school year as part of cost-cutting measures. That’s up from the 14 percent who considered such measures during the 2008-2009 year.

“I’ve seen it happening in Massachusetts, in Ohio, in Indiana. A lot of school districts are looking at in varying degrees,” said Robin Leeds, industry specialist with the National School Transportation Association.

Parents and transportation advocates say the proposed cuts will have wide-ranging repercussions — affecting everything from parents’ work schedules to student attendance. Many also worry that the cuts will jeopardize the safety of students who may have to cross busy highways or dangerous roads to get to class. Deadly school bus crashes are rare, while past studies have shown riding to school in a car, walking and bicycling account for hundreds of student deaths a year.

I wonder why, when we need to economically cut to the quick, we so quickly cast our children into welfare right before we throw them under the yellow bus.


  1. It’s a strange thing, Gordon. Every employee must confirm the people on the NY State health insurance are allowed to be covered. So entire families are being vetted — through tax forms, birth certificates and passports — to prove to the state that everything is legal and proper. I understand that will save the state money when it comes to employees… but who will end up paying for those who are disenfranchised in this healthcare purge? It’s a bit of a Straw Man to clean up one side of the ledger while filling a whole new welfare niche in need of new funding. It’s madness!

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