The Arc of Whatcom County Parent Coalition E-Alert
Parent Coalition

Lawmakers Debate Funding Extension

Later this week, the House of Representatives is expected to vote on the American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act (H.R. 4213) which includes a six month extension to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's (AARA)  temporary increase in the federal share of Medicaid spending (known as the FMAP).  The ARRA increase expires on December 31, 2010.  The Senate previously approved a six month extension to the ARRA increase to the FMAP.  Without this increase, states are likely to have to make significant cuts to their Medicaid programs for the 2011 fiscal year.

Washington state is already relying on this increased funding in its state budget.

Without swift enactment of a six-month FMAP extension, many states will be forced to make deep cuts in programs, including home and community based services, supported employment, dental care and even basic health care.

The American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act (H.R. 4213) contains a 6-month FMAP extension. Please call your representatives office to share your concerns about these vital services and your feelings on HR 4213. You can call toll free by dialing (877) 442-6801.

Reduced and No-Fee Passes Available to People with Disabilities

Washington State Parks is offering passes that reduce or waive camping, moorage and watercraft launch fees for people with developmental and other disabilities, limited income senior citizens, disabled veterans and foster parents. Qualified individuals may apply for more than one type of pass, although only one pass may be used at a time. These passes are valid only at Washington state parks.

Passes are good for 50 percent discount on nightly camping/moorage, free watercraft launching and trailer dumping, and are valid all year round. They are available for one-year  periods for those with a short-term disability, or five-year  periods for more permanent disabilities. Passes are offered to Washington state residents who are legally blind, profoundly deaf, developmentally disabled or who meet the disability definition used by the U.S. Social Security Administration.

Note: A Permanent Disability Parking Permit, issued by the Washington State Department of Licensing, also entitles you to the 50 percent disability discount on camping and moorage and waives the trailer dump and boat launch fee. Simply show your placard or license plate directly to the park ranger.

Download the application for a pass by visiting the Washington State Parks website or click here to go directly to the application.
The Seal of Washington StateFREE WORKSHOP

Psychotropic Medication and People with Developmental Disabilities

Come to a FREE workshop sponsored by the Division of Developmental Disabilities!

This workshop will discuss the use of psychotropic medications in people with developmental disabilities.  Topics include psychiatric diagnosis, when to prescribe, side effects, monitoring, and drug-drug interactions of commonly used medications in each drug class.  Discussion will involve antidepressants, mood stabilizers, antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, stimulants, medications for dementia and substance abuse, and much more!
Dale Sanderson is a physician assistant providing psychiatric services to adults with developmental disabilities in a clinic; in a small inpatient unit; as part of a crisis stabilization team; and, in conjunction with a psychiatrist in private practice.  He is a graduate of MEDEX Northwest Physician Assistant training program at the University of Washington School of Medicine. Previously he provided primary care to individuals with developmental disabilities in a large residential setting north of Seattle.
Target Audience:  Care providers who work in residential, vocational, or recreational programs; parents; DDD case resource managers; DD mental health specialists; teachers and educators; and other interested persons.  Everyone is welcome!  The workshop is FREE!
To register, call Kristin Ihrig at (425) 339-4828 or e-mail at  Please give the name of the workshop, your name, organization, the number of people attending, and your phone number.

10 June
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Psychotropic Medication and People with Developmental Disabilities 
Everett DDD
840 North Broadway Building A, #100
Everett, WA  98201
Room 103
(Bring your own beverages and snacks.  Lunch on your own or brown bag it.)
The Arc of Whatcom County provides information and referrals, educational programs, and funding for people with developmental disabilities, their families, and the organizations that serve them.

This E-Alert is made possible by funding from the Whatcom County Developmental Disabilities program.

42nd District

Senator Dale Brandland
Phone: (360) 786-7682

Representative Kelli Linville
Phone: (360) 786-7854
Representative Doug Ericksen
Phone: (360) 786-7980

39th District

Senator Val Stevens
Phone: (360) 786-7676

Representative Dan Kristiansen
Phone: (360) 786-7967

Representative Kirk Pearson
Phone: (360) 786-7816

40th District

Senator Kevin Ranker
Phone: (360) 786-7678

Representative Dave Quall
Phone: (360) 428-1023

Representative Jeff Morris
Phone: (360) 786-7970

To reach any legislator:

Toll-Free: (800) 562-6000

May 2010

21 Friday
Noon - 1:30 pm
Autism Support Meeting
The Arc's Dan Godwin Community Center
2602 McLeod Road
Bellingham, WA
Contact Beverly: 715-0170

22 Saturday
Noon - 3:00 pm
The Arc Annual Membership Meeting and PIZZA Party
The Arc's Dan Godwin Community Center
2602 McLeod Road
Bellingham, WA
Contact Makenna: 715-0170 x205

22 Saturday
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Street Law at the Library
Bellingham Public Library
210 Central Avenue
Bellingham, WA
Contact: 671-3079

23 Sunday
Noon - 3:00 pm
Down syndrome Outreach Spring Fling
Fairhaven Park
Bellingham, WA
Contact Makenna: 715-0170 x205

24 Monday
4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Whatcom County Developmental Disabilities Advisory Board
St. Luke's Education Center
3333 Squalicum Parkway
Bellingham, WA
Contact Jessica: 676-6724 x32014

June 2010

5 Saturday
10:00 am - Noon
Youth Self Advocacy
The Arc's Dan Godwin Community Center
2602 McLeod Road
Bellingham, WA
Contact Amy: 715-0170

8 Tuesday
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
ICC Meeting
St. Luke's Education Center
3333 Squalicum Parkway Bellingham, WA
Contact: 734-8396 x229.

14 Monday
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Parent to Parent
Support Meeting

Whatcom Center
for Early Learning
2001 H Street
Bellingham, WA
Contact Christine: 255-2056