We want you to be informed about Summit DD's levy, Issue 3, so we've compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions. Of course we welcome other questions, just contact us! We're happy to help.
Is Summit DD closing?
Absolutely not. Recent federal mandates require that Summit DD no longer provides direct services for adults because they coordinate and fund those disability services. However, rest assured that no one will lose their services due to this change. Summit DD will continue to connect, protect and monitor services so that people can live their lives to the fullest. (Read more about Our Journey Forward.)
Will people lose their services and programs?
No one will lose their services because of the new Federal rules for DD Boards. Individuals will select another provider and continue to have their services funded and coordinated by Summit DD, as well as health and safety oversight through the Agency. However, the passage of Issue 3 is critical to ensure funding is available for these services from 2019 - 2024.
What does this levy fund if they won’t be providing direct services for adults in the future?
Summit DD is the Agency that funds and connects more than 2,700 adults to disability services throughout Summit County. They monitor these services for safety and ensure that people are receiving the supports they rely on. The levy also funds early intervention services for 1,000 kids and families, investigations of reports that impact health and safety, service coordination, Special Olympics and more. It’s important to vote yes on Issue 3 November 7th to maintain these services and programs.
Where are the savings going if they aren’t operating buildings and buses in the future?
Funding for services is linked to each individual and their needs, not to the Agency. When an individual leaves Summit DD for another provider, that same funding follows them. There are operating savings associated with no longer being a service provider in terms of staff and building costs (totaling around $11.4 million). However, those savings are offset by two factors:
- The federal Medicaid revenue that Summit DD received for providing services will now be paid to the private provider that the individual chooses. This also means that Summit DD will receive $5.4 million less revenue beginning in 2019.
- Secondly, federal Medicaid pays 60% of the Medicaid rate for eligible services. When Summit DD was the provider, the remaining 40% was absorbed into the operating costs, such as salaries, benefits and facility costs. However, when a private provider becomes an individual’s provider, Summit DD pays that remaining 40% of services costs as a Medicaid “match” to the actual provider. They project Medicaid costs to increase by $4.8 million in 2019.
The remaining $1.2 million in operating savings is injected into new programs to set children and teens up for success as adults. It also funds service growth as Summit DD has supported 1,600 more people since 2006 and will continue to grow by about 100 new people each year. Voting yes on Issue 3 ensures that the funding is available for those who need it.
Why do they need a levy if there is Medicaid money?
Summit DD is able to tap into approximately $60 million in Medicaid funding for Summit County because of the levy dollars, but that only covers 60% of the cost of those services. The levy funding covers remaining 40% of the cost of services like transportation, day programs and job assistance services.
Additionally, programs like early intervention, transition supports for teens and job training programs are funded 100% through local levy money. That’s why it’s important to vote.
What other sources of income does Summit DD receive?
While Summit DD does receive a mix of some federal and state dollars, about 80% of their operating income comes from the levy that takes place every six years. The operating levy generates about $50 million in revenue, of which $25 million is set aside to meet their Medicaid obligation. (That $25 million is what allows them to tap into the additional $60 million in federal Medicaid funds that can then be reinvested into the local economy.)
The other $25 million is the revenue needed to provide early intervention services, conduct reviews of all allegations of abuse or neglect, coordinate services for adults and school age kids, support quality of life programs like Special Olympics and support service needs of those not eligible for Medicaid.
Will this cost taxpayers more money?
Nope! The good news is that this levy is a renewal and a 0% tax increase. That means for no new money this levy will ensure that 4,700 adults and children with developmental disabilities will continue to receive the services and supports they rely on to reach for their goals.
How much will this levy cost taxpayers?
For just $11.50 a month (for a house valued at $100,000) this levy will fund services for children and adults with developmental disabilities through 2024.
How do I know that my money is being used well?
Summit DD believes in transparency and being good stewards of taxpayer money. They have operated on the same level of funding since 2007. The Agency has seen an increased demand for services, serving 1,600 more people in the last 10 years without a tax increase. They project that trend to continue and expect the need for services to grow by about 100 new people each year.
Is the levy campaign funded with tax dollars?
No. The levy campaign (coordinated by a volunteer action committee called “Support Summit DD”) is run by volunteers and is funded 100% from donations - not tax dollars - which is why every donation, large and small, counts! Donation are used to promote the passage of this ballot issue that provides crucial funding for essential services and supports to more than 4,700 kids and adults with disabilities. Help empower people of all abilities and get involved today!
What happens if Issue 3 fails?
The passage of Issue 3 is crucial to ensure that the daily needs of nearly 5,000 children and adults with disabilities are met. Without levy funding, early intervention services would be discontinued for 1,000 families with kids under the age of six; 650 Special Olympic athletes would lose funding; school supports for teens transitioning to adulthood and the workforce would be discontinued; and access to current and future Medicaid funding for Summit County and its residents could be jeopardized. That’s why it is so important to vote yes on Issue 3 this November.
How can I help?
Great question! There are a number of ways to help from requesting yard signs to inviting the committee to speak at your local club or committee meeting. Check out our Campaign Toolkit for ideas on how to get involved, donate or sign up to volunteer with Support Summit DD.