To the Editor:
I am the executive director for the Bristol Adult Resource Center, and I want to relay the very painful impact of not having a state budget for our current fiscal year that started on July 1.
Our agency will close its day programs on Wednesday, July 26, because the state Department of Developmental Services cannot fund us on that day. DDS is using furlough days to implement the Governor’s Resource Allocation Plan which was executed due to a failure by the legislature to agree upon a budget for this fiscal year. Another five furlough days are planned, if necessary.
As a result, over 150 of our adults with developmental disabilities will need to find other arrangements for that day, and subsequent days if there is no responsible budget enacted soon. For those who live with their families, this will be an enormous burden. For others who live in residential programs, additional costs will be incurred. It is very likely that these costs will not be paid by the state, and therefore must be absorbed by agencies.
BARC employs over 200 staff who work very hard to provide quality programs for our individuals. I implore our legislators to enact a budget that responsibly supports the work that BARC does. I understand that the House Republicans would like to even further privatize services like we provide - this is a great solution to our budget crisis, but it will not work unless providers are adequately funded.
Mary F. Etter, executive director
Bristol Adult Resource Center, Inc.