SCR 98, Beall. California’s community-based developmental services system: 50th anniversary.
This measure would recognize the year of 2016 as the 50th anniversary of California’s community-based developmental services system, and would reaffirm the commitment of the Legislature to support this system. This measure would declare the importance of ensuring a sustainable system that protects the rights of individuals with developmental disabilities.
WHEREAS, Fifty years ago, the State of California piloted a new approach to serving individuals with developmental disabilities by enacting a bold new direction in public-private partnership that fundamentally changed and dramatically improved the quality of life for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families, and that would become a model for the nation; and
WHEREAS, That partnership model was based on the premise that the services required of a regional center are of such a special and unique nature that they could not be satisfactorily provided by state agencies and thus required private nonprofit entities to contract with the state to meet the unique needs of the different geographic regions; and
WHEREAS, In 1965, Assembly Bill 691 established a pilot program that created two regional centers in 1966, one at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, later named Frank D. Lanterman Regional Center, and another at San Francisco Aid Retarded Children, Inc., later named Golden Gate Regional Center, with the Regional Center of the East Bay formed later from the latter project’s eastern region; and
WHEREAS, The pilot program was so successful that it was turned into a permanent statewide program in 1969 by Assembly Bill 225, known as the Lanterman Mental Retardation Services Act; and
WHEREAS, In 1973, Assembly Bill 846 recast the act as the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act and proposed expansion of eligibility for regional center services to individuals with cerebral palsy, epilepsy, and autism, among other developmental disabilities; and
WHEREAS, In 1977, the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act was passed, enumerating various rights to individuals with developmental disabilities, enshrining the role of regional centers as advocates for those rights, and creating an individualized planning process that forms the core of the uniquely tailored services and supports that each participating individual receives; and
WHEREAS, Regional centers provide service coordination to ensure that the needs of individuals with developmental disabilities are met using a combination of natural supports, generic services, and the purchase of vendored services; and
WHEREAS, Community-based service providers offer an array of services in each community to meet the unique needs of every individual with a developmental disability, doing so at significant cost savings to the State of California when compared to the cost of institutional care; and
WHEREAS, California’s network of regional centers and service providers serve nearly 300,000 individuals with developmental disabilities who, as a result of the service, are able to live, work, grow, and thrive in the community; and
WHEREAS, Years of underfunding have reduced access to needed services and supports, have threatened the sustainability of the system as a whole, have strained families, and have reduced the quality of life for individuals with developmental disabilities; and
WHEREAS, The active support and leadership of the Legislature is a critical component of any and all efforts to reinvigorate and renew the community-based developmental services system; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate of the State of California, the Assembly thereof concurring, That the Legislature hereby recognizes the year of 2016 as the 50th anniversary of California’s community-based developmental services system; and be it further
Resolved, That the Legislature declares the importance of ensuring a sustainable system that protects the rights of individuals with developmental disabilities and their full inclusion into community life; and be it further
Resolved, That the Legislature reaffirms its commitment to defend, support, and advance the community-based developmental services system; and be it further
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.