From the Autism Society
On September 28, 2018 President Trump signed the annual appropriations bill for programs within the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (L-HHS-ED). Most disability programs are level-funded or provided slight increases. In addition, two new laws were funded. Kevin and Avonte’s Law received the authorized amount of $2 million for competitive grants awarded to non-profit and State and local entities to prevent wandering and locate missing individuals with cognitive disabilities, such as Alzheimer’s Disease, autism,or other developmental disabilities, as described in the law. Another law passed in this Congress, the RAISE Family Caregivers Act, was provided $300,000 to establish the Caregiver Advisory Council. Other highlights include the following:
- An $86 million increase for special education IDEA state grants and $10 million more for preschool-age children with disabilities.
- An increase of $1.5 million for professional development and the development of evidence-based services for people with autism through the Health Resources and Services Administration.
- A $4 million increase for research into independent living for people with disabilities through the Administration for Community Living.
- A $26 million increase for the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant, a flexible grant program providing home visiting, early childhood programs, and professional development, including those specific to assisting people with autism.
- A $15 million increase for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) center providing surveillance, research, and services for those with developmental disabilities.
- A $2 billion increase to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to provide basic bench research.