COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
STATE HOUSE, BOSTON 02133-1053
Senator Joan B. Lovely
2nd Essex District
Phone: (617) 722-1410
Friday, May 24, 2013
SENATOR LOVELY PASSES BUDGET AMENDMENTS TO INCREASE FUNDING FOR DEPARTMENT OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES
(Boston) Participating in her first budget debate as a member of the Legislature, Senator Joan Lovely successfully sponsored two amendments to increase funding for services provided by the Department of Developmental Services. The amendments, which the Senate passed yesterday as it completed deliberations on the state budget, direct an additional $1 million to the Turning 22 program and an additional $2 million to the Respite Family Supports program.
“Turning 22 and Respite Family Supports can transform the lives of the developmentally disabled and their families,” said Senator Lovely. “Like everyone else, developmentally disabled individuals and their parents should be able to pursue lives of independence and happiness, and these initiatives help make that happen. I’m glad to stand up for the human services, and I’m hopeful that these programs will continue to be priorities for the Commonwealth.”
Turning 22 provides assistance to developmentally disabled young adults as they begin their transition into the adult service system. Respite Family Supports provides periodic relief to parents and other family members who are caring for a developmentally disabled individual. Like many state-provided services this year, these programs had faced budgetary challenges as Massachusetts continues to recover from the recession.
Late last evening the Senate voted to approve a $33.989 billion budget for fiscal year 2014, including an additional $5 million for local aid and an additional $1.3 million for the costs that cities and towns incur to transport homeless children back to their home school districts. Differences between the Senate and House budgets will now be resolved in a conference committee before a final version is sent to Governor Patrick for his approval.