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Governor Kasich's Historic Budget

Governor Kasich's historic budget invests $286 million
($116.5 million State share) over the next two years to
increase opportunities for Ohioans with disabilities to
live and work in the community. The initiatives in this budget expand supports for those who are waiting for services, increase opportunities for community participation, and improve the experience for those who are receiving services by modernizing our programs and strengthening the direct care force. Initiatives will bring the following benefits:

More people will have access to the services they need.

Approximately 3,000 new state-funded Home and
Community-Based Services (HCBS) waivers will
increase support to people on the waiting list, and those who choose to leave Intermediate Care Facilities (ICF) and Developmental Centers (DC). This is in addition to new waivers supported by County Boards. Also, individuals on the Transitions DD (TDD) Waiver will be converted
to Individual Options (IO) Waivers, improving access
to providers, and increasing access to services such as
day services.

People will have increased space and privacy.

Continuing the work from the last biennium, 1,200
people will move from ICFs and DCs into smaller
settings, either a small ICF or a home in the community
with an HCBS waiver. Individuals will receive the
needed level of support in either setting. Also, over a ten-year period, all ICFs will move to having only two people living in a bedroom. This will help more people live in smaller settings, and increase the space and privacy for those who want to continue living
in larger ICFs. The new two to a bedroom requirement
won’t apply to children (up to 21 years old) and those
who are currently living with more than 2 to a bedroom and want to continue that arrangement.

People will have access to new and improved employment
and day services options.

The budget includes nearly $3 million in new funding
for each of the next two fiscal years to create new
service models that promote community employment
and integrated day services. Individuals, who desire, will transition from workshops and other facility-based day settings to community-based alternatives over an
extended time frame. This will increase opportunities for community participation,
and ensure the State is in compliance with federal regulations. Additional funds for community employment are
earmarked for ongoing support of DODD’s partnership with Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD) to assist in the cost of transitioning to integrated day services and supported employment, and to inform and assist individuals and families, as well as those who develop person-centered plans, regarding the options
available to them.

The community infrastructure will be stronger.

The budget continues to prioritize funding to reflect the growing demand for Home and Community-Based Services. Funding will allow DODD to add nursing services to the IO waiver to enable people with medical needs to live in community settings, provide for much-deserved increase for direct care staff, increase the availability of add-on services for individuals with complex needs and behavioral challenges, provide training for those who receive, plan, and deliver waiver services, and strengthen oversight and quality assurance efforts so the person-centered plan is delivering meaningful outcomes.

Thank You

Our system includes thousands of committed and
engaged individuals and families, thousands of dedicated direct support professionals, unpaid family caregivers, innovative private and public service providers, community members, advocates, and much-need tax payer support.

Regardless of which role we play in the system, we are
all bonded by our shared passion to improve the lives
of the more than 90,000 individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

The Department thanks each of you for your suggestions,
assistance, and support during the budget
process. We look forward to continuing the work with
you to improve the lives of Ohioans with disabilities.

Person Centered Planning

On Tuesday June 2nd, representatives from Turning Point and No Limits traveled to Cuyahoga County to attend an all-day conference regarding Person Centered Planning for all individuals enrolled in waiver services. The days events were sponsored by the Ohio Waiver Network. Guest speakers included Jean Tuller from the DODD, three superintendents from area counties and a guest speaker from our local STIR self-advocacy group. The day was successful in sharing information among different providers and counties, and assisting providers in remaining in compliance with rules and regulations governing adults with disabilities.