The Legislative Session’s Budget Bill, appropriating monies for Minnesota’s eight Centers for Independent Living, was approved, and provides a one-time One Million funding and $500,000 added to our base funding, starting July 1, 2016.  SMILES’s share is $144,778 added to our base, and $145,475 in one-time funds.

The Minnesota Association of Centers for Independent Living worked closely with Marty Seifert, who served in the Minnesota House of Representatives (R) from 1996 to 2010 and now works for Flaherty & Hood, a law and legislative advocacy firm in Marshall, Minnesota.

Thank you to everyone who helped advocate for funding Centers for Independent Living!  We especially want to thank the many Legislative Authors who drafted the bill supporting Centers: Senators David J. Tomassoni,(DFL) Carla J. Nelson,(R) Michelle L. Fischbach,(R) Kent Eken, (DFL) and Lyle Koenen,(DFL); House Representatives Bob Gunther,(R) Paul Torkelson,(R) David Bly,(DFL) Clark Johnson,(DFL) Tony Cornish,(R) Tama Theis,(R) Tim Mahoney,(DFL) Jim Knoblach,(R) Karen Clark,(DFL) Rod Hamilton,(R) Kim Norton,(DFL) Chris Swedzinski,(R) Tim O’Driscoll,(R) Nels Pierson,(R) Greg Davids,(R) Erik Simonson,(DFL) Tim Kelly,(R) and Joe Schomacker (R).

Your legislators want to hear from you all year round, not just during the session.  Please remember the legislators you wrote to or contacted regarding disability related issues or law, and thank them for their support and hard work on behalf of Minnesotans.