The Human Cost of Colorado’s Budget Crisis

shared courtesy of The Denver Post

This was supposed to be the year.

Republicans and Democrats were on board, as were all members of the state Joint Budget Committee. They’d have to set aside a lot of money, but after careful planning over several years, lawmakers vowed Colorado would finally pass legislation to start clearing the state’s backlog of roughly 3,000 adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, waiting in line — in some cases, for more than a decade — to receive waivers for housing and 24/7 care provided through a Medicaid program.

Then the coronavirus hit. Seemingly overnight, state budget writers went from having a projected surplus in the 2020-21 fiscal year to furiously hacking away at the budget to close a virus-provoked $3 billion shortfall.

Continue reading