Letter to the Editor:
State of Iowa budgeting is a difficult proposition and even more difficult in tough economic times. This past February the Iowa Department of Human Services announced a $29.7 million shortfall in operating revenues. The department proposed to reduce the number of employees by 15 percent or 899 positions state-wide. This translated to a $1.25 million reduction in the proposed budget of the Iowa Juvenile home which would also result in elimination of 38 full-time positions and reduction of child capacity from 77 to 40.
Foundation swings into action:
The Iowa Juvenile home foundation, a charitable, non-profit foundation, established in 1996, took up the challenge and with the help of Representative Lance Horbach, began a lobbying campaign at the state house. After the final budget bill was in place, all employee positions and full treatment capacity were reinstated. The Iowa Juvenile home will be allowed to operate through June 30, 2011 at current population and staffing levels.
Carol Thompson, president of the Iowa Juvenile home Foundation stated, “We can’t thank Representative Horbach enough for his leadership and perseverance in this matter. He understands the important work being done at the Juvenile home and has been a steadfast supporter during his entire tenure in the Iowa House. I would also like to express appreciation to the other members of the Foundation board for their work in saving these jobs and beds. All of the board members serve on a volunteer basis and have been instrumental in supporting the students and staff of the Juvenile Home.
Anyone wishing to support the Iowa Juvenile Home foundation financially can send donations to Iowa Juvenile home Foundation, 701 S. Church St., Toledo, IA 52342 or can contact me at The State Bank of Toledo, 641-484-2980.