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The Madera Tribune

Unhappy over loss of coverage for kids

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webmaster | 06/17/13

Sixty-five billion dollars for a “Train to nowhere” ... $30 billion for “water tunnels.” Not one dime, though, for developmentally disabled children of California.

On June 10, Gov. Jerry Brown in all his wisdom, along with the super majority of the California Legislature, exercised their elected right to vote on state matters. The governor and the legislature passed a trailer bill that made it illegal for the Department of Disability Services (DDS) to pay co-pays and deductibles for families that have children with developmental disabilities. Another trailer bill requires parents with children that have developmental disabilities to access their insurance carriers to cover the services deemed medically necessary. The parents’ reward for following the law is to be saddled with paying co-pays and deductibles. Costs to the State of California: zero. Costs to the parents: thousands of dollars for following the law.

You, Gov. Brown, and your super majority’s legacy of building a “train to nowhere” and water tunnels through the mountains will forever be tainted by allowing an entire generation of children to be denied medically necessary services.

You, Gov. Brown, have managed a feat that no other governor or legislator has been able to accomplish since the enactment of the Frank J. Lanterman Act. The Lanterman Act was instituted to give the developmentally delayed children a chance at life rather than institutionalization. Since 1976, California has protected it’s DD population across all political avenues. Gov. Brown, in one afternoon’s work your trailer bill denying co-pays and deductibles have put our children on a pathway back to institutionalization.

Parents who cannot afford the co-pays are left with difficult decisions to manage their families with children with DD. Does Johnny get ABA therapy or does Martha get to go to collage? Thank you, Gov. Brown, for this dilemma. A family facing these kinds of decisions would never be able to afford to travel on your train to nowhere. Then again, travel would be out of the question from an institution.

You and your super majority should bow your heads in shame for setting the future of the children with DD. Gov. Brown, I will sell my farm and any other asset I own before I will allow my granddaughter to follow the model you have set before her.

Chuck Genseal,
grandfather of Michelle Scroggins (with autism),


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