The NYS Social Services System

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The NYS Social Services System has inconsistencies that can make financial security very challenging. For someone not familiar with this system, it might not make any sense. In fact, that is because it is not sensible.

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Nassau County Department of Social Services

A Closed System

Social Services is a closed system. In other words if one area increases, another area will decrease rather than also increase. For example, when there is a COLA (cost of living) increase in monthly social security payments, food stamp payments will decrease.

Logic would dictate that if the cost of living increases, the cost of food also increases. But the closed system concludes that if an individual receives a greater social security payment, there is less need for assistance with food purchases.

Another example is that increases to income through other sources and benefits can lessen if not eliminate ones eligibility for food stamps. In other words, it can best to get a direct increase in food stamps rather than an increase in monthly income.

In addition, if an individual’s income increase is great enough, one can lose Medicaid benefits. That can result in a loss of coverage for medical expenses that are covered under Medicaid. Medicaid coverage is substantially greater than Medicare coverage. Therefore if one needs financial assistance from the social services system, it is better to qualify for more help rather than less help.

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New York State Local Social Services Departments

The Inconsistencies

Because of the inconsistencies within the social services system, it is important to learn how it works. A good place to start is with a social worker at a community senior center. Actually these professionals often schedule visits to senior residential facilities offering their services at no cost.

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The NYC Department of Social Services

In addition, counties have facilities where individuals can learn about and apply for financial assistance. To find one, check on Google. In the Sources & Resources section below are links to several social services departments. They include New York State and counties within it.

SOURCES & RESOURCES

Nassau County Department of Social Services
Suffolk County Department of Social Services
NYC Department of Social Services
Social Programs | The State of New York
New York State Local Departments of Social Services
Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)


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WHEN A COMPANY OFFERS SOMETHING FOR NOTHING


FIOS FREE INTERNET: Is It Really Free

The current ‘Fios Free Internet’ promotion needs close examination. This is because offers of something for free may not beat the competition’s price without something for free. Such is the case with the current offer from Fios, the internet provider that is Optimum’s competition. Below is a flyer about this promotion.

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The flyer describing the current promotion from ‘Fios for Free’ Home Internet service.
HOW TO COMPARE THE FIOS FREE INTERNET PROGRAM AND THE OPTIMUM INTERNET SERVICE
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Contact information for the free Fios Home Internet with Verizon’s Fios Forward discount

Making a comparison might seem confusing and overwhelming. It is important to do the following:
a. learn what the program offers at verizon.com/fiosforward
find out whether or not you qualify for the Fios program
b. know what program you participate in and exactly what you have as well as what you are paying now at Optimum.net
c. find out if you qualify and if the offer saves you money by contacting the person whose name is on the flyer (bottom left side of flyer).
STEP ONE
Find out if you qualify for the FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program. The flyer specifies how to do this in the bottom left hand corner.
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Verizon fios internet service and TV provider
STEP TWO
Continue only if you qualify. We qualified. So the next thing to do was to ascertain what program we had and how much we pay. We have the Optimum triple play program which is a discounted package. It normally costs $122/month. In addition, we have another discount program of $30 more off each month. So we pay $92/month.

STEP THREE
As an alternative, if someone is not signed up for anything or already signed up with Fios for all their services, the free internet offer might very well be an advantage. But, as Optimum subscribers, it would not be for us. If we dropped the triple play program, the cost for TV and telephone service would equal about what we are already paying for everything, $92/month.

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Optimum.net/triple play monthly bill

Personally, we would not benefit from the Verizon Fios Free Internet Program because we already have the Internet with the Optimum triple play package. But if we did not have triple play or the additional $30/month discount, the Fios program might benefit us.

IN CONCLUSION
There is a lot to consider here because a ‘something for nothing’ offer is not as simple as it appears to be. Instead, it is a something for nothing offer with several ‘ifs’ involved. So be sure to do your due diligence. That way you will know for certain that you are getting the best Internet deal, free offer or not.
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