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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Eye On Boise

Testimony continues; 80 more want to speak

Doug Loertscher of Boise told lawmakers he's testifying in opposition to the "blunt approach," one of two options for cuts that state Health & Welfare officials have outlined to lawmakers, and that calls for eliminating developmental disability center services and psycho-social rehabilitation services. "I personally would pay more taxes to save some  of these programs and serve some of theses families that have testified today," Loertscher said. He also called for extending temporary rules imposed last year aimed at savings in Medicaid, and adding to those; and implementing a provider assessment for mental health providers similar to those already in the works for nursing homes and hospitals.

Debbie Ciulla of Boise, mother of a disabled son, told lawmakers, "We're weary. We just love our kids, but we can't provide the level of support that we need by ourselves."

Sen. Dean Cameron, R-Rupert, co-chair of JFAC, said after her testimony that the committee still has 80 more people who would like to testify, and it's nearly 11, the time the hearing was scheduled to end. "We do have the ability to go a little bit longer," he said. "Committee members may have to leave." From this point on, he said, the committee will hear just from those who've traveled from out of the area.

Eye On Boise

News, happenings and more from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.