Press Room

ASTHO Statement on President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2019 Budget

ARLINGTON, VA (Feb. 12, 2018)—Michael Fraser, executive director of ASTHO, issued the following statement on President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2019 budget, “Efficient, Effective, Accountable: An American Budget.”

“ASTHO is pleased that the President’s budget includes a multi-billion dollar proposal for HHS to address the opioid epidemic plaguing the nation. This is a major step in the right direction, but it is critical that these funds supplement and not supplant core public health funding. Additionally, state and territorial health officials applaud the expansion of the state targeted response grants that are given to states through SAMHSA and resources for CDC to support opioid prevention activities.

Overall, we are concerned with CDC funding and the many proposed cuts and consolidations of public health programs. CDC is the only agency working 24/7 to protect all Americans from disease outbreaks and health hazards. Federal investments need to align with the ever-increasing demands posed by infectious diseases like Zika, Ebola, and influenza and extreme weather events like hurricanes Irma and Maria and other emergencies.

While we appreciate the attention to provide additional state flexibility and reduce administrative burden, these should not come with additional funding cuts. Moreover, policymakers should take careful considerations and ensure a compelling need for any programmatic or consolidation proposals must be evident given the success and stability of the current paradigm.

We look forward to working with the Administration and Congress to secure sustained funding for all state and territorial public health agencies and our federal partners to achieve optimal health for all.”


ASTHO is the national nonprofit organization representing the public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. territories and freely associated states, and the District of Columbia, as well as the more than 100,000 public health professionals these agencies employ. ASTHO members, the chief health officials of these jurisdictions, are dedicated to formulating and influencing sound public health policy and to ensuring excellence in public health practice.