CHICAGO – August 28, 2009. Governor Pat Quinn today announced the closure of the Howe Developmental Center in Tinley Park. Transitions of current Howe residents are expected to be completed by the end of April 2010.
“It is with the utmost consideration for the well-being of the residents and staff at Howe Developmental Center that I make this decision,” said Governor Quinn. “The State will work diligently to ensure a smooth transition for current Howe residents to appropriate settings.”
Under the closure plan, residents will transition to community-based homes, intermediate care facilities for persons with developmental disabilities or to other developmental centers. The Division on Developmental Disabilities within the Department of Human Services will work with the individuals, family members, guardians and their individual support teams to implement the closure while assisting in the relocation and transition for each resident.
The Governor’s decision comes after an April 28 ruling by the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (CGFA), which voted 9-to-3 in favor of closing the facility.
On May 4, Governor Quinn commissioned Anne M. Shannon, the former President and CEO of Aspire, to examine the issues regarding providing quality care for residents at Howe Developmental Center. In past months, Shannon met with more than 60 families of current and former Howe residents, advocacy groups, legislators and employees before presenting her recommendations to the Governor. (Final Report)
On August 15, upon recommendation from Anne Shannon, Governor Quinn made an unannounced visit to Howe Developmental Center to talk with staff, residents, parents and family members, while also assessing the facility’s operations.
“After visiting the facility and reviewing the recommendations of the Department of Human Services, the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability and independent consultant Anne Shannon, I am moving forward with the closure of the Howe Developmental Center,” said Governor Quinn.
In April 2007 Howe was decertified by the Illinois Department of Public Health and federal Centers for Medicaid Services rendering it unable to bill for Medicaid reimbursement. The decertification has caused the state to receive $26 million less annually.
Howe Developmental Center currently has 251 residents and 694 staff.