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updated: 12/19/2010 8:34 AM

NW suburban legislators need to support special needs

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During the recent campaign in the 56th House District, issues took a back seat to attack mail, in convincing people to vote for either candidate. If the winner would have stopped long enough to listen, good ideas to help families with special needs children would have come out of it.

Sittercity.com, with the approval of the state, is willing to market an Internet source to link people that want to be special needs caregivers, with special needs families in the state that could use the help to work outside the home.

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State and local nonprofit agencies for too long have not had enough respite care workers or respite care funding to meet the demands of special needs families. To start the program and help create jobs for caregivers and help special needs families, cooperation of state representatives would be needed to market the service to every special needs family in the state, with the help of special needs organizations.

A plan was offered to provide incentives for hiring people with disabilities by offering state and federal tax credits. Right now, employers receive state and federal tax credits for ex-felons and only federal tax credits for persons with disabilities.

The plan supported the shifting of funds for a state level ex-felons tax credit, to a new state level tax credit for hiring persons with disabilities.

It favored reviewing special needs spending to identify existing funds that could be moved to the state Medicaid program though Medicaid waivers, a move that would result in additional dollars for direct services because the program would bring federal matching dollars.

Special needs program cuts and no solutions to improve special education and services have been the norm for years in Springfield. It's time for state Sens. Mike Noland and John Millner, and state Reps.; Fred Crespo and newly-elected Michelle Mussman, to listen to these ideas that would provide help to families.

Are you here to help all special needs families in your districts or is it no solutions and business as usual in Springfield?

Mike Baker

Schaumburg

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