New data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show state and local health departments reporting more cases than ever of tick-borne diseases, including Lyme. But this year’s state budget didn’t include $1 million on the state Senate wish list — passed in its “one-house budget.” Some senators had asked for even more.
State Sen. Pam Helming, R-Canandaigua, who works with local advocates such as the Ontario County Lyme Disease Support Group, sought $2 million to take action on a series of bills.
“Lyme and other tick-borne diseases continue to be on the rise, and I have been working hard to secure important funding and resources for our communities affected by this growing public health issue,” stated Helming, who advocated for the $1 million in last year’s budget that went for education and research. A former member of the Senate’s Task Force on Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases, Helming added “we must do more.”
“Lyme and other tick-borne diseases impact thousands of individuals and families across our region. We have to continue to fight for resources for our communities — including children, who are at the highest risk of Lyme disease exposure, as well as our hardworking farmers whose livelihoods depend on working outside all day.”