The Assembly this afternoon by a vote of 49-21-1, passed A-5802, which makes a FY 2020 supplemental appropriation of $9.5 million to DOH for family planning services. The bill’s sponsor, Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald (D-6) fended off Republicans with specific questions about the appropriation.
“Does your bill restrict funds from being used to counsel [women] to receive an abortion?” asked Assemblyman Jay Webber (R-26).
Greenwald insisted that the money is “not used for abortion or referral for abortion.”
According to A-5802, the bill specifies that these funds are to be allocated, in a manner determined by the Commissioner of Health, to family planning providers: 1) who qualified as participating service providers under the Title X family planning program, authorized by the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. s.300 et seq.), as established in statute and regulations on April 1, 2019, and 2) who subsequently became ineligible for federal funding provided through the Title X program due to the adoption of federal regulations prohibiting the use of Title X funds based the providers’s core mission and not the provider’s ability to deliver family planning services.
Under the bill, eligible family planning providers pursuant to these provisions are to receive funding amounts as determined by the Commissioner of Health; however, such amounts are not be greater than the average Title X grant amount received by the family planning provider over the two most recent program grant cycles, plus any non-recurring Title X grant funds.
It is the sponsor’s intent that this supplemental appropriation will provide continuity and stability for the funding of family planning services provided to low income women in the State by replacing any federal funding that family planning providers will lose with the adoption of new federal regulations governing the use of Title X funding. These revised federal regulations, among other provisions, prohibit recipients of Title X funding from referring patients for abortions.