Ways and Means and Health Care Finance Committee Hearing Testimony

At the Ways and Means and Health Care Finance Committee Hearing, Leo Sarkissian, Gillian Buckley and Herb Cabral provided testimony in support of the legislature rejecting the Governor’s Mass Health cuts and  to override the DDS line item vetos. Pictured with Leo is Gillian Buckley, a 19 year old sibling of two brothers with autism and a state house intern for Representative Jeff Roy. July 24, 2017 Dear Committee Members, …

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MassHealth Reform Debate Continues

On Tuesday, the US Senate passed a bill to continue the health care debate, threatening major changes in Medicaid as attempted in the Senate earlier this year and passed in the US House.   Meanwhile on Beacon Hill, the Joint Committees on Ways and Means and Health Care Financing held a hearing on Governor Charlie Baker’s MassHealth Reform Package. Chief of Staff Kristin Lepore, Secretary of Health and Human Services …

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Uncertainty

On Monday, Governor Charlie Baker vetoed an additional $320 million from the legislature’s state budget, including a cut of more than $7 million from the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) budget. The impact of the reductions mean uncertainty for many people and this will be heightened by the continued uncertainty caused by Capitol Hill policy makers. Although we believe that the legislature will override the Governor’s vetoes, we don’t know …

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The Running Game in Advocacy

In football, the running game may be slow but it’s nearly always the key ingredient to any winning strategy. In talking about Running Back LeGarrette Blount, New England Patriots Coach Bill Belichick said he liked the fact that Blount has the “ability to make the yards that we need at the time we need them.” That’s what advocacy is about, too. We facilitate opportunities for people so they are empowered …

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Update for Conference Committee budget release

Disappointing news today, July 7, 2017, as the Conference Committee released a 40.2 billion dollar budget for fiscal year 2018.  The bill reflects 600 million in adjustments to the FY 2018 budget made due to the tax revenue falling below projections as well the uncertainty of forecasted revenue.  The Arc appreciates the minimal trimming of the line items that we have strongly advocated for, such as Turning 22 and Family …

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A message from Secretary MaryLou Sudders on the appointment of an interim commissioner:

Dear Colleagues, As you know, Commissioner Howe is retiring from public service next Friday, July 14, 2017.  I’m pleased to inform you that Jane Ryder, Deputy Commissioner has  agreed to serve as  Interim Commissioner beginning July 15th while the active search for a successor continues. Jane has worked for the Department since September of 1995 and was promoted into the Deputy Commissioner role in July 2015.  She has assisted Commissioner …

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Support The Arc of Massachusetts with a Gift Today

Thousands of caretakers across the state are striving to do what is best for their family members. The Arc of Massachusetts works to ensure that they have the resources they need by: Advocating for increased funding for services and supports Offering educational resources, including webinars, clinics, and the Turning 22 Conference Training medical students in the special needs of patients with I/DD in Operation House Call Partnering with The Arc …

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