We were sooo happy to hear the Mayor and see his proposed budget today. Our efforts through the Keep Us Connected Campaign put access to computers, training and support high on our list.
While we thought there might be good news, seeing it in writing makes it real. The Mayor’s budget said…
“In 2010, the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded $7.9 million to San Francisco for a Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP). The purpose of the award was to increase technology accessibility in San Francisco with a focus on bridging the digital divide of seniors and adults with disabilities. Of the $7.9 million, HSA received approximately $3.0 million for DAAS Senior Programs. While the activities have helped to enrich the lives of seniors and adults with disabilities, this important work would not be continued after September 2013 without new funding. The FY 2013-14 and 2014-15 budget contains over $1.4 million in General Fund support to continue this program.
Over the next two fiscal years, DAAS will work with each of the existing 54 BTOP sites to ensure program effectiveness.” Mayor Lee’s 2013-14 & 2014-2015 Budget May 31, 2013.
There will be more to do before this budget is final, but for today, we will just enjoy this very good news!
I need to say that the Community Living Campaign is about a whole lot more than computers and social media. So we also applaud the Mayor for funding many other important programs and services. This includes eliminating the cuts to behavioral health programs and restoring funding to HIV & AIDS services, expanding support for meals for seniors and persons with disabilities, providing a long over-due wage increase for homecare workers and the list goes on and on.
So thanks Mayor Lee, Supervisors Chiu and Farrell, and all who helped bring this hopeful budget forward.
It is like finding water after a long walk in the desert.