BOSTON (CBS) – Governor Charlie Baker’s revised budget proposal for fiscal year 2021 is offering less funding for groups that support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The Arc of Massachusetts is one of the organizations impacted.
The governor’s initial budget proposal allocated nearly $254 million for these services. The new plan sets aside $219 million.
Arc executive director Leo Sarkissian said the difference will have a major impact on the people and families that benefit from these services.
“The biggest deficit right now on paper is the employment and day programs. It’s $34 million, which brings it below last year’s number. They’re just looking at the reality that 100% of people can’t be served, but what that also does is risk the sustainability of the day system so it may not be here when the pandemic is over if they don’t allow the organizations to bill at a rate that allows them to keep things safe and allows people to come to the program,” he told WBZ-TV.
“On the residential side, we’re talking about 800 people that are more at risk if the extra covid funds aren’t provided and those funds were 17.5 % more between March and June and we need that to continue through rest of the year.”
Sarkissian said anyone who is interested in helping groups like The Arc can reach out to the governor and your local legislator to advocate for more funding.
Or you can make a donation, by visiting thearcofmass.org.