Millett bill to fund essential services for intellectually disabled Mainers receives unanimous committee support
AUGUSTA— On Tuesday, a bill from Sen. Rebecca Millett, D-Portland, received unanimous approval from the Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee. LD 1984, “An Act To Eliminate Waiting Lists for Home and Community-based Services for Adults with Intellectual Disabilities, Autism, Brain Injury and Other Related Conditions,” would provide funding for critical services that help intellectually disabled adults in Maine.
“Today, roughly 2,000 Mainers with intellectual disabilities suffer while waiting to receive critical services through Section 21 and 29 waivers,” said Sen. Millett. “These are our family members, friends and neighbors, who received assistance through high school and made progress in leading productive, healthy and happy lives. But, once they finished school, they often regress. This is cruel, and not only do they suffer, their family members suffer. Many Mainers have been forced to give up their own careers to care for their loved one. We owe it to them to take action and to address this grave injustice that they have been forced to deal with.”
As amended, LD 1984 would provide funding to clear the Section 29 wait list through June 2021, clear the Section 21 Priority 2 wait list for those who are currently not receiving any services, and raise the cap on Section 29 services to $70,000.
LD 1984 faces votes in the Maine Senate and House in the coming weeks.