posted on April 17, 2014 10:24
Speaker Robert DeLeo after passage of Autism Omnibus bill with Barbara L'Italien,
Amy Weinstock, Ann Guay and on left, Julia Landau and Tina Fitanides
April 17: Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed a comprehensive Autism bill - House 4047. The bill was a combination of many of the pieces of legislation filed in January of 2013 as a result of the work by the Governor's Autism Commission.
The legislation will reestablish the Autism Commission as a permanent and autonomous entity, necessary since the previous commission sun-setted upon release of the report. It provides for an executive director to support autism advocacy, training and reporting. There are two specific areas directed to study - the long-term needs for housing and employment - in addition to the areas of study and recommendations previously covered by the commission.
DDS will now be directed to include in its eligibility guidelines the federal definition of developmental disability for people on the autism spectrum and those with Prader Willi. This change will assist many whose functional needs are not reflected by their IQ score and who are now denied access to DDS.