2 DDS regional centers to close at end of June - WFSB 3 Connecticut

2 DDS regional centers to close at end of June

Posted: Updated:

Two regional centers for Connecticut Department of Developmental Services will close at the end of June.

On Thursday, the DDS officials announced that they will close Ella T. Grasso Regional Center in Stratford and Meriden Regional Center in Meriden. The centers will close June 30.

The move, according to DDS officials, is to “re-appropriate funds in order to serve a larger number of constituents.”

DDS officials said the state-operated centers “often cost more than independent providers.”

Commissioner Morna Murray said DDS “is always to provide services and supports that are person-centered.”

"In order to maintain and eventually even increase services, reducing some of our high-cost, lesser used public residential facilities and moving these services to the private sector is essential. We are also working to identify ways to utilize some closure savings in the community,” Murray said in a statement on Thursday.

DDS officials said the plan “aims to right-size the amount of services provided directly by DDS and instead expand services to a wider number of people who may not currently have access to them.”

There are 40 people, who reside at Ella T. Grasso and Meriden regional centers and are supported by 171 people.

The residents of Ella T. Grasso and Meriden regional centers can be relocated to facilities in Norwalk, Newington and Torrington. They can also could “move into public or private community-based settings.” 

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said he is “deeply committed to providing quality services to the highest number of people possible with the best possible outcomes.”  

"Even though we're in a new economic reality, we are doing the best we can to preserve funding for community residential services next year and find efficiencies where we can among existing services. We must rebalance our priorities to ensure that we can serve more families in need of services within our budget realities. I am certain DDS will handle these transitions in a thoughtful and sensitive manner,” Malloy said in a statement on Thursday.

The last regional center closed was Seaside Regional Center in Waterford. It was closed in 1986. 

There are five regional centers and public residential facilities run by DDS. They offer 24/7 services and supports to a total of 175 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.