Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Proposed State Budget

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn released his initial FY2011 budget proposal on March 10. This is of great importance to Human Support Services (HSS) since we receive about 75% of our funding from the state. According to the Governor, “Illinois faces a budget shortfall of more than $11 billion. This represents nearly one-third of our tax-funded spending, or the General Revenue Fund (GRF)… Without substantial changes in spending or revenues—or both—the fiscal mess will only get worse”.

He then presented a budget for FY2011 that shows the extent to which cuts would be needed to address the deficit. For a variety of reasons, he chose to target human services funding and particularly mental health funding for major cuts. Should the proposed budget pass as presented, it would cost HSS $540,000 in lost funding, almost 20% our entire revenue. Particulary hard-hit would be our residential programs, where funding for supportive housing could be cut by more than 60% for adults with mental illness and up to 15% for adults with developmental disabilities. Also, our entire $94,000 grant to pay for mental health services for persons without insurance would be eliminated.

Absorbing a 20% loss of revenue would obviously be hard to do. The cuts that target our residential program would be particularly difficult, as staffing is needed to provide adequate supervision of disabled residents. At this point we need to recognize this is a just the Governor’s budget proposal and the legislature has to ultimately pass a budget for him to sign. Consumers, families and friends of individuals with disabilities need to take action to let our elected officials know your concerns. Where would the people we serve in our housing programs and our day services program go if HSS could not continue to provide its community services? We ask that the public stay involved with the state’s budget process and let elected officials know that services are needed and funding is necessary.

The elected officials for Monroe County are:

Senator David Luechtefeld,
Illinois Senate, District 58
103B Capital Building
Springfield, IL 62706
217-782-8137 (Springfield)

Representative Dan Reitz
200-9S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
217-782-1018 (Springfield)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

February Employee of the Month

Human Support Services named Margie Baum Employee Of The Month for February. Margie, from Lenzburg, has been with Human Support Services nine years. Margie is a Developmental Trainer. She was recognized for volunteering her time to assist site workers helping clients get ready for a special event. Margie received a gift certificate, time off with pay, and a lunch certificate from Quizno’s of Waterloo.

Monday, March 15, 2010

January Employee Of The Month

Human Support Services named Jackie Wilson Employee Of The Month for January. Jackie, from O’Fallon, has been with Human Support Services three years. Jackie is a Therapist, and the Assistant Clinical Director. She was nominated by an Agency client who recognized and thanked Jackie for the assistance she had provided. Jackie received a gift certificate, time off with pay, and a lunch certificate from Quizno’s of Waterloo.