Shaheen Leads NH Delegation in Urging Trump to Support Funding Boost for Meals on Wheels Program

January 30, 2020

**The NH Delegation Supported Increased Funding to the Meals on Wheels Program Included in Government Funding Legislation Signed into Law in December**

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, led a letter with Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) calling on the Trump administration to boost funding for the Older Americans Act (OAA) in his upcoming budget proposal to Congress for fiscal year (FY) 2021. The Meals on Wheels program operates under the OAA. With more than 30,000 seniors relying on Meals on Wheels in New Hampshire for nutritious food, the program has become strained for resources in parts of the state in an effort to keep up with the state’s aging population. 

The delegation wrote, “We have been concerned by damaging budget cuts that you have proposed for OAA programs in recent years. For FY 2019, your Administration called for a $40 million reduction for the OAA congregate meals program and a $19 million reduction for the OAA home delivered meals program, a cut of approximately 8 percent for each program. In FY 2020, your Administration requested level funding for both programs.” They continued, “Congress has repeatedly recognized the growing challenges for senior meal programs. Rather than slashing funding for these vital programs, over the past three years Congress provided a $60 million increase for the congregate meal program and a $39 million boost in funding for the home delivered meals program.” 

The entire New Hampshire congressional delegation supported an increase in federal funding to the Meals on Wheels program for FY2020, which was included in the government funding legislation signed into law in December. Senator Shaheen is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee that writes the government funding legislation every year. 

In closing, the delegation wrote, “To best meet the needs of an expanding aging population, we will need bipartisan commitment from Congress and your Administration. As the appropriations process for FY 2021 unfolds, we encourage you to work with Congress to prioritize resources to programs under the Older Americans Act that are so vital to our communities.” 

The New Hampshire congressional delegation’s letter can be found here. 

During her time in the Senate, Senator Shaheen has been a strong supporter of robust funding for the Meals on Wheels program. Last year, Shaheen and Hassan sent a letter to Senate Appropriations Committee leaders requesting a boost in funding for Meals on Wheels in the government funding legislation for FY 2020. Shaheen and Hassan have previously fought to protect funding for Meals on Wheels from cuts proposed by the Trump administration and to fully fund the program.