Reach Up cuts to disabled recipients held off for two months

Christopher Curtis

State agrees to continue benefits while lawyers prepare arguments in the case. Vermont Legal Aid claims the reduction is unconstitutional and that it discriminates against households with family members with a disability.

State notifies Reach Up recipients of $125 a month reduction in benefits

Ken Schatz

Some 860 families will take a $125 cut. Advocates say the new policy is a “tax” on Vermont’s poorest households.

Vermont Legal Aid statement opposing ‘disability tax’ for Reach Up families

Advocates turned out at a budget hearing today to oppose a $1.65 million budget cut targeting families on Reach Up who have household member with a disability.

Budget proposal cuts Reach Up funds to households receiving disability benefits

Christopher Curtis

Gov. Shumlin says the proposal could save the state more than $1.6 million. But, it would impact more than 1,100 households, according to the Department for Children and Families.

New report on DCF again calls for more staff, better training

Cindy Walcott, deputy commissioner of the Department for Children and Families, answers questions on the death of Winooski toddler Peighton Geraw at a news conference Thursday in Burlington. Photo by Laura Krantz/VTDigger

A third report on the Department for Children and Families came to similar conclusions as the other two: DCF needs more front-line staff, better training, and a stronger focus on opiate addiction’s impact on families.

Lawmakers OK $600,000 to hire staff to implement IT overhaul

Lawrence Miller, chief of health care reform testified before the Joint Fiscal Committee on July 24, 2014, with Stephanie Beck, the person responsible for the overhaul of Human Services' IT systems. Photo by Hilary Niles/VTDigger

Despite news Thursday that budget cuts will be required to cope with a downgrade in the state’s revenue forecast, officials say the project must move forward.

Cost of new DCF social workers won’t hurt other programs, officials say

DCF Commissioner Dave Yacovone addresses advocates at a meeting at the Agency of Human Services Tuesday. Deputy Commissioner Richard Giddings is sitting behind him. Photo by Alicia Freese/VTDigger

Savings from Reach Up program to pay for 18 new social workers and more in response to the deaths of two children who had contact with DCF system.

Reach Up recipients can keep a little more pay under new law

Kevan Davis/Creative Commons

Lawmakers allow families a little more latitude in accepting a raise at work by easing the “benefits cliff.” They also extended child care subsidies.

Vermont cushioned against shutdown, but not for long


“If this things drags on there are very serious ramifications,” Secretary of Administration Jeb Spaulding says.

Legislative Wrap-up: Welfare reform

David Yacovone, courtesy photo

The Legislature took a softer approach than Shumlin pushed for; lawmakers decided to delay or waive the cap for families in certain situations.

Senate Appropriations budget bill includes five-year cap on Reach Up benefits

Sen. Jane Kitchel. VTD/Josh Larkin

Senate Appropriations had no shortage of choices, between the administration’s two proposals, the House’s version, and the Senate Health and Welfare Committee’s recommendation.

Finn: Now is the time to invest in all our children

Only four years later, it seems we are ignoring some of the important lessons we learned from the Vermont Child Poverty Council’s work. Perhaps most troubling is that we have forgotten that stigma hurts.

Public Assets Institute takes to airwaves to counter governor’s EITC proposal

Gov. Peter Shumlin unveiled his budget on Thursday (01/24/13) to the General Assembly in Montpelier Vermont. Photo by Roger Crowley

Public Assets Institute remains adamant that reducing the EITC by any amount is poor policy.

Shumlin administration proffers new Reach Up plan to Senate budget committee

David Yacovone, courtesy photo

The governor’s new plan kicks “sanctioned” families off the program after just four months.

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