TO: The DMR Community
FROM: Elin M. Howe, Commissioner
DATE: January 29, 2009
RE: Update 162

Fiscal Year 2010 H1 Budget Recommendations for DMR

On January 28, 2009, Governor Patrick released his Fiscal Year 2010 House 1 recommendations. This budget recommends $1,245,670,784 for the Department of Mental Retardation (the Department of Developmental Services as of June 30, 2009) and $6.5 million for the DESE/DDS (formerly known as the DOE/DMR) program which brings the total to $1,252,170,785.

This budget represents a $68 million reduction from the funding amount that in previous years would have included maintenance funding plus the annualization of FY 2009 expansion items that include $17.6 million for the Turning 22 class, and $25.5 million for community placements and services for the Rolland class members. In addition, this budget transfers $8.3 million to the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) budget as part of the statewide information technology reorganization. Highlights of the FY 2010 budget including account consolidations are described in more detail below.

5911 - 1003 Administration and Operations - $68,224,506

There is a reduction of $5,337,561 in this account which consists of a transfer of Information Technology resources of $4,397,532 to EOHHS and the annualization of previous FY 2009 9c cuts of $940,029. At the start of FY 2009, this account was already reduced by $2,058,691 and resulted in staff reductions that included the loss of 16 service coordinator positions and 5 administrative positions.

5911 - 2000 Community Programs - $146,869,768

This account is a consolidation of 3 accounts that stood alone in past budget years (5911 - 2000 Transportation, 5920 - 2025 Day and Work, 5920 - 3000 Respite and Family Support). The budget recommendation for this new combined account represents a reduction of $45,204,684. The Department is currently reviewing strategies to address this reduction.

5920 - 2000 Residential Programs - $852,653,066

This account is a consolidation of 4 accounts that stood alone in past budget years (5920 - 2000 Residential programs, 5920 - 2006 Residential Rate Increase, 5920 - 2010 State Operated Residential Programs, 5920 - 2000 Boulet). The budget recommendation for this new combined account represents a reduction by $8,834,819 (including $1,040,632 as an IT transfer to EOHHS). The reduction includes $2.0 million that was funded in prior years for the residential rate increase, $775,000 in cuts to earmarks and $5.0 million resulting from later starts for new Rolland programs. The account total also reflects a transfer of $10,857,594 of residential and individual support services funding from the former Respite/Family Support account. With this transfer to the Residential account, funding for these services will now be in the appropriate account.

5920 - 3010 Autism Division -$3,717,509

The recommendation for this account represents a reduction of $739,288 that includes $82,620 as an IT transfer to EOHHS. The Department is currently reviewing strategies to address this reduction.

5920 - 5000 Turning 22 Services - $7.700,000

The amount of $7.7 million in this account will fund first year services for the new FY 2010 Turning 22 class. This account is level funded.

5930 - 1000 State Facilities - $166,355,936

This account is reduced by $15,890.479 which includes $2,804,027 as an IT transfer to EOHHS. This reduction reflects $13.0 million projected in savings from the facility consolidation initiative that includes the closure of the Fernald Developmental Center in FY 2010.

5948 - 0012 Intergovernmental Transfer - Special Education Alternatives of Children with MR - $6.500,000

This account funds the DESE/DDS program, formerly known as the DOE/DMR program at $6.5 million which is the same funding level as the FY 2009 amount when $3.5 million was cut as a FY 2009 9c reduction.

5982 - 1000 Templeton Retained Revenue - $150,000

This account is level funded at $150,000.

Information on services provided to individuals served by DMR but funded in other state agency budgets will be provided at a later date.


An additional $7.6 million was cut from the Department's FY 2009 budget as a result of a second round of 9c reductions made necessary because of the falling revenues. These reductions were taken in a manner that resulted in very little negative impact on current services. The specific cuts include:

$514,000 in the Respite /Family Support Account which was part of the $1.0 million appropriated for FY 2009 expansion and had not yet been allocated.

$1,092,000 in the State Facilities Account as a result of declining fuel prices resulting in reduced fuel costs.

$5,400,000 in the Rolland funds provided under an interagency agreement with MassHealth that reflects the actual funds needed to start new residential programs within the fiscal year and still be in compliance with the Settlement Agreement.

$600,000 in the Transportation Account because only $3.0 million of the additional $3.6 million requested in FY 2009 will be needed funds to get through the fiscal year.


On Saturday, January 31, 2009, the citizen advisory board chairs will join members of the DMR Statewide Advisory Council (SAC) for the annual SAC reTreat that will be held at the Monson Developmental Center in Palmer. The day will start with a "Town Meeting" with Commissioner Howe and finish with workshops in the afternoon.

State House Celebration of MR/DD Month - March 30th

On Monday, March 30, 2009, DMR (the Department of Developmental Services as of June 30, 2009) and the Statewide Advisory Council will host its Annual State House Recognition Event in the Great Hall. The theme this year is CELEBRATING CHANGING THE NAME / CHANGING EXPECTATIONS. On this day, self-advocates, legislators, organizations and other citizens will be recognized for their leadership efforts in educating, advocating, and legislating to change the name of the Department. Please Save the Date and join in the celebration. For more information, contact Ralph Edwards, Director of Citizen Leadership at or 617-624-7755.

DMR Adapted Activities Library

The Adapted Activities Library is a free lending library run by the DMR Metro Region Occupational Therapy Department. This resource is currently located on the grounds of the Fernald Center in Waltham. The Library offers staff and families the opportunity to try out and evaluate innovative products. The Library has over 400 assistive technology products that include adapted switches, cooking aids, and communication devices. There are vision aids, memory aids, sensory activities, adapted games and devices to help control everyday electronic equipment such as a lamp or radio. In addition, there is a large collection of computer software and interface devices geared to a wide variety of skill levels and interests. The Library also offers classes for staff on how to use computers and select software for adults with developmental disabilities. To more information, contact Linda Einis, the Library director, at 781-894-3600 x2518 or email her at

This information is provided by the Department of Developmental Services.