Keep Meals Rolling

May 03, 2017

To the Editor:

Ocean County Freeholder Joseph Vicari, a Republican who is seeking re-election this year, has vowed to protect Meals on Wheels, a program that benefit seniors should cuts in President Trump’s proposed budget be approved by Congress later this year.

While this popular program mainly relies on donations and volunteers to provide hot meals to older Americans, some funding is obtained through the Administration for Community Living, an agency of the Department of Health and Human Services.

One problem with the freeholder’s statement is that Meals on Wheels is not a federal program and doesn’t directly receive federal funding. The thought of seniors starving or going hungry, as Vicari has stated, would present a compelling thought that would get one’s attention and become a rallying point for politicians like Vicari seeking the senior vote. “We will not cut services for senior citizens” is a noble battle cry directed at the more then 160,000 older adults calling Ocean County home. Freeholder Vicari serves as chairman of the Ocean County Office of Senior Services and is the board’s director in 2017, keeping with the Republican tradition that a freeholder whose seat is up for re-election leads the county’s governing body.

With the national debt approaching $20 trillion, preserving social safety net programs will be challenging, but most agree that any cuts should not be made at the sole expense of the economically disadvantaged seniors.

Art Mooney

Little Egg Harbor


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