LINCOLN — A special legislative committee wants to continue its oversight of how Nebraska cares for people with developmental disabilities.
No one testified against a resolution to extend for another year the Developmental Disabilities Special Investigative Committee during a hearing Monday before the Executive Board. The board voted unanimously to advance Legislative Resolution 20 to the full Legislature.
Lawmakers created the committee in 2008 to investigate problems that had surfaced at the Beatrice State Developmental Center, the home for people with some combination of mental disability, mental illness and physical disability. Abuse and substandard care of residents caused the center to lose Medicaid funding in 2009.
While the funding has since been restored, the U.S. Justice Department continues to monitor the center after a federal investigation determined the civil rights of residents had been violated.
Board member Sen. Steve Lathrop of Omaha cited the ongoing Justice Department oversight as a reason to keep the committee active for another year.
He also said the center is under the leadership of a new director and the special committee can help lessen the burden on the Legislature's Health and Human Services Committee, which has a full agenda this year with child welfare reform.
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