February 18, 2015 – Training Center Bills

The last of the bills that would impede the closure of the training centers was killed in subcommittee yesterday. 

SB 1446 (Miller) was defeated in a subcommittee of the House Health, Welfare and Institutions committee on Tuesday, February 17th.    As originally drafted, the bill would have prohibited the development of a new discharge plan for 9 months after a plan had been developed for a resident of a training center.  The patron reworked the bill to, instead, limit communications to writing only except for once every six months.  That version passed the Senate but was defeated yesterday. 

Other training center related bills:

HB 1365 (Campbell) would have made it optional, rather than mandatory, for a local social service department to provide for the care of a former training center resident if the individual needed assistance.  The bill was tabled in a House subcommittee.   

HB 1614 (Campbell) would have required that the state keep Southwestern Training Center open.  The Health and Human Resources subcommittee of House Appropriations killed the bill.

SB 1300 (Newman) would have required that the Commonwealth keep Northern Virginia Training Center open until December, 2016 and that the state to develop a plan to keep three training centers open.  The bill was withdrawn by the patron, who requested that the issue be addressed in budget proposals.

Neither the House budget proposal nor the Senate Budget proposal contained any additional funding to keep training centers open beyond that funding requested by the Governor. The Senate proposal does suggest that the Joint Legislative Committee providing oversight of the closure should meet between sessions.

We continue to monitor developments in the Virginia General Assembly and are available to assist policymakers as they consider proposals that may have an impact on individuals with disabilities.  The mission of the disAbility Law Center of Virginia is, through zealous and effective advocacy and legal representation, to protect and advance the legal, human and civil rights of people with disabilities, to combat and prevent abuse, neglect and discrimination, and to promote independence, choice and self-determination by persons with disabilities.