Posted: 7:00 p.m. MST
U.S. Representative Raul Grijalva (D-Arizona) was in Yuma Thursday and made a number of stops. At a conference on aging, he gave an update of federal funding for senior services, many of which he said may be cut come March.
"Everything from Meals on Wheels, to housing, to nutrition centers, to [recreation] centers, to counseling, to investigation of elder abuse--all those are on the line," Grijalva said.
Ten thousand Americans reach the age of 65 each day in the U.S., according to the Pew Research Center.
In Yuma and surrounding counties, there has been a significant senior population growth over the last decade, according to the Western Arizona Council of Governments.
"I think we need to prepare for that, and we're not prepared," Grijalva said.
He added that Congress needs to explore its revenue-generating options before cutting programs.
Grijalva proposed four means of generating revenue: closing the tax loophole for American companies that take their business overseas; ending tax breaks for owners of private jets and yachts; ending government subsidies for fossil fuel; and limiting excessive contractor compensation.
Grijalva said these measures would amount to $309 billion in savings over 10 years.
"It's real easy to say cut, when you're not the one getting the cut. I think they should put themselves in their shoes before they talk so brave," Grijalva said.
In March, Congress faces another fiscal fight.
Grijalva said many services that seniors depend on can be on the line.
"Eventually you cut, you begin to devastate programs that people need."
After speaking at the Western Arizona Council of Governments, Grijalva toured the VA clinic in Yuma.