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Louisiana Gov. Vetoes Home Care Funding Boost

July 10, 2013

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R) used a line-item veto on June 21 to cancel a $4 million increase in funding for a state Medicaid waiver program that supports independent living for people with developmental disabilities through a self-determination service model.

The increase was scheduled to go into effect on July 1, the start of the 2014 fiscal year.

State lawmakers threatened to call a veto override session to restore the $4 million, but local observers say that such a move is unlikely.

The funding boost would have been used to expand the New Opportunities Waiver (NOW) program, allowing an additional 200 Louisianans with developmental disabilities to receive services and supports in their own homes.

Some of those people have been on a waiting list for waivers for 10 years or more, according to a June 29 Daily Advertiser editorial.

“These aren’t people that are trying to buck the system, or get something for nothing,” said Chrystal Morton, the director of Family Care Services, Inc., a Shreveport-based home care company that serves people with disabilities, in an interview with KTBS-TV. “These are people that need our help.”

— by Matthew Ozga

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