ASSEMBLY, No. 1098

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

216th LEGISLATURE

PRE-FILED FOR INTRODUCTION IN THE 2014 SESSION

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman† VALERIE VAINIERI HUTTLE

District 37 (Bergen)

Assemblyman† TIMOTHY J. EUSTACE

District 38 (Bergen and Passaic)

Assemblyman† PATRICK J. DIEGNAN, JR.

District 18 (Middlesex)

Assemblyman† THOMAS P. GIBLIN

District 34 (Essex and Passaic)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Assemblyman Coughlin, Assemblywoman Sumter and Assemblyman Chivukula

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Requires follow-up studies of developmental center residents transitioning to the community.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† Introduced Pending Technical Review by Legislative Counsel

 


An Act concerning individuals with developmental disabilities and supplementing chapter 6D of Title 30 of the Revised Statutes.

 

†††† Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

†††† 1.††† a.† The Commissioner of Human Services shall conduct, or contract with another entity to conduct, a series of follow-up studies to assess the well-being of:

†††† (1)†† all former residents of North Jersey Developmental Center and Woodbridge Developmental Center who have made a transition into the community after August 1, 2012, and also an assessment of the well-being of all former residents for each of the five years after the closure of both developmental centers;

†††† (2)†† all former residents of other State developmental centers who have made a transition into the community after the effective date of this act as a result of the implementation of the plan developed pursuant to P.L.2006, c.61; and

†††† (3)†† all former residents of other State developmental centers who have made a transition into the community after the effective date of this act as a result of implementation of a plan to close another State developmental center, and also an assessment of the well-being of all former residents for each of the five years after the closure of another developmental center;

†††† The studies shall evaluate former residents based on data collected after residents have been in the community for at least six months. †For former residents who were scheduled to make a transition into the community as a result of a closure of a developmental center under paragraphs (1) or (3) of this subsection, the study shall also evaluate these former residents based on data collected at least six months prior to transition into the community.

†††† b.††† Data for the studies shall be collected from all former residents, their family members or guardians, as appropriate, and staff providing supports and services to the former residents, as applicable; except that data collected from staff shall be limited to objective and quantitative data.

†††† c.††† The studies shall:

†††† (1)†† contrast the data collected on former residents with a comparison group of individuals with developmental disabilities still residing in a developmental center, as applicable; and

†††† (2)†† compare the data collected pursuant to subsection a. of this section for each former resident who was scheduled to make a transition into the community as a result of a closure of a developmental center, prior to and after the resident has been in the community.

†††† d.††† The studies shall examine, at a minimum, data concerning:

†††† (1)†† the types of residential settings, day activities, if any, and transportation services available for day activities, as applicable, of former residents;

†††† (2) the number of transfers to other State developmental centers, as applicable;

†††† (3)†† the number of moves to different placements, if any, experienced by former residents;

†††† (4)†† for former residents who are residing in the community, their preference for residing in a State developmental center or the community based on a comparison of former residentsí experience in a State developmental center and the community;

†††† (5)†† the ability of former residents to maintain the same level of services and supports provided prior to a transition into the community;

†††† (6)†† former residentsí involvement with law enforcement personnel, if any;

†††† (7)†† mortality rates of former residents;

†††† (8)†† former residentsí competency in the areas of cognition, self-care, and mobility;

†††† (9)†† former residentsí contact with family members or guardians, as appropriate, and peers;

†††† (10) behavioral, medical, or excessive weight changes in former residents;

†††† (11) utilization and accessibility of health services by former residents;

†††† (12) the staff to resident ratio of former residents residing in community placements; and

†††† (13) the attitude of former residents and their family members or guardians, as appropriate, about the former residentsí current quality of life, including, but not limited to, economic well-being, productivity, and personal safety and health.

†††† e.††† In the case of former residents receiving guardianship services, the studies shall indicate whether they are receiving these services from the Bureau of Guardianship Services in the Division of Developmental Disabilities in the Department of Human Services or from family members or other interested persons appointed as guardians.

 

†††† 2.††† a.† The Commissioner of Human Services shall compile the results of the follow-up studies conducted pursuant to section 1 of this act and shall include this information in a series of reports that the commissioner shall submit to the Governor, and to the Legislature pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), as follows:

†††† (1)†† The report of a follow-up study of the well-being of all former residents of North Jersey Developmental Center and Woodbridge Developmental Center, who have made a transition into the community after August 1, 2012, shall be submitted one year after the effective date of this act, and annually thereafter, until both developmental centers have closed.† In addition, for each of the five years after the closure of both developmental centers, a report of a follow-up study of the well-being of all former residents of these centers shall be submitted;

†††† (2)†† The report of a follow-up study of the well-being of all former residents of other State developmental centers, who have made a transition into the community after the effective date of this act as a result of implementation of the plan developed pursuant to P.L.2006, c.61, shall be submitted annually, commencing one year after the effective date of this act, until the plan has been fully implemented; and

†††† (3)†† The report of a follow-up study of the well-being of all former residents of other State developmental centers, who have made a transition into the community after the effective date of this act as a result of implementation of a plan to close a State developmental center, shall be submitted one year after the beginning of implementation of the plan, and annually thereafter, until the developmental center has closed.† In addition, for each of the five years after the closure of a developmental center, a report of a follow-up study of the well-being of all former residents of the center shall be submitted.

†††† b.††† Reports submitted pursuant to this section shall be made available on the website of the Department of Human Services.

 

†††† 3.††† This act shall take effect on the first day of the seventh month next following the date of enactment, but the Commissioner of Human Services may take such anticipatory administrative action in advance thereof as shall be necessary for the implementation of this act.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

†††† This bill provides for a series of follow-up studies of former residents of State developmental centers who have made a transition into the community from the developmental centers.† The Commissioner of Human Services is required to conduct, or contract with another entity to conduct, the studies, which are to assess the well-being of the former residents.

†††† Specifically, the studies would assess the well-being of all former residents of North Jersey Developmental Center and Woodbridge Developmental Center who have made a transition into the community after August 1, 2012, which is the date of the "Final Report" of the Task Force on the Closure of State Developmental Centers that recommended closing these two developmental centers.

†††† In addition, the studies are to include all former residents of other State developmental centers, who have made a transition into the community after the effective date of the bill as a result of implementation by the Department of Human Services (DHS) of its "Path to Progress" plan.† The plan was developed pursuant to P.L.2006, c.61, in accordance with the principles of the United States Supreme Court's decision in Olmstead v. L.C., 527 U.S. 581 (1999), to ensure that individuals with developmental disabilities who have expressed a desire to live in the community and whose individual habilitation plan so recommends, can do so.

†††† The follow-up studies are to also include assessments of former residents of other State developmental centers, who have made a transition into the community after the effective date as a result of the implementation of a plan to close a developmental center.

†††† The studies are to evaluate former residents based on data collected after residents have been in the community for at least six months.† For former residents who were scheduled to make a transition into the community as a result of a developmental center closure, the study is also to evaluate these residents based on data collected at least six months prior to transition into the community. The collected data on former residents is to be contrasted with a comparison group of individuals with developmental disabilities still residing in a developmental center, as applicable, and also compared with the data collected for each former resident prior to and after transition into the community.

†††† The data are to be collected from the residents, their family members or guardians, and the staff who provide supports and services to residents, and the bill lists the specific data to be examined to assess well-being.

†††† The results of a follow-up study are to be compiled in a report, which is to be made available on the DHS website and submitted to the Governor and the Legislature.† The report of a follow-up study of former residents of North Jersey Developmental Center and Woodbridge Developmental Center is to be submitted one year after the effective date, and annually thereafter, until both centers have closed.† In addition, for each of the five years after the closure of both developmental centers, a report of a follow-up study is also to be submitted to the Governor and Legislature.

†††† For the study of former residents of other State developmental who make a transition into the community as a result of implementation by DHS of its "Path to Progress" plan, a report is to be submitted annually, commencing one year after the effective date, until the plan has been fully implemented.

†††† Additionally, a report of a follow-up study of former residents of other State developmental centers that may close is to be submitted one year after the beginning of implementation of a plan to close a developmental center, and for each of the five years after closure.

†††† The bill has a delayed effective date of the first day of the seventh month following enactment to provide for administrative action in advance of the effective date.