Early Start restoration is at hand. The Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Health and Human Services heard our voices, and authorized a $12 million reinvestment in the program. The money will be used, starting October 1, 2013, to "alter and prioritize changes in eligibility to allow for more children to participate."
So what's next? We have to ensure this stays in the budget that goes to Governor Brown.
Eight legislators will be examining the budgets the Assembly and Senate produced. This will happen in a "conference committee" that resolves differences such as this one between the budgets each house has produced. They need to know that keeping this money in the budget is a critical investment in the long-term developmental health of our infants and children.
The conference committee begins meeting today, working over the weekend, and into early next week.
Your quick action is critical to this, so please click here to view the Association of Regional Center Agencies' (ARCA) petition.
You are encouraged to add your own story of why this is important to you, and thus bring your personal story to their attention. This is happening because people like you recognize that the State can either serve children now, or for a lifetime.
Take a few minutes and let these legislators know that this is your priority. And then ask your friends and family to do the same.