Valley Mountain Regional Center

Valley Mountain Regional Center History

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1. Board organized and policies established.
2. First Board of Directors (James T. Austin is the first Executive Director)
3. Office locations selected
4. Staff hired and/ or transferred from Alta Regional Center
5. Total caseload: 944


6. VMRC became the first regional center in the state to be accredited by the Joint commission on Accreditation of Hospitals
7. Stockton office relocated to expanded space

California creates the Department of Developmental Services. The administration of the developmental services programs is removed from the huge State Department of Health and placed in a much smaller department of state government.

8. VMRC absorbed the staff and services of the Community Care Services Branch of the California Department of Social Services
9. Bargaining unit organized and first union contract negotiated
10. CLASP invited to appoint an ex-officio member to the VMRC Board of Directors

11. Implemented statewide computerized and client data system
12. Joint VMRC/Area VI Board Planning Committee formed
13. Vulnerable client settlement agreement negotiated with the Department of Social Services enabling VMRC to serve medically fragile consumers in community care facilities.

14. Stockton office moved to new quarters on Murray Drive
15. Total caseload: 2822

Serious state budget deficits cause the Department of Developmental Services to reduce funding for regional centers, and, in turn, cause some regional centers to implement cost-saving strategies such as waiting lists and categorical cuts in services.

In the Association for Retarded Citizens v. California Department of Developmental Services et al., the California Supreme Court rules that the Lanterman Act “defines a basic right and a corresponding basic obligation . . . [T]he right which it grants to the developmentally disabled person is to be provided with services that enable him to live a more independent and productive life in the community; the obligation which it imposes on the state is to provide such services.” These services are to be determined through the individual program planning process and provided as an entitlement. The decision also states that the regional centers, not DDS, have wide discretion in determining how to implement the IPP, but no discretion at all in determining whether to implement it. The Court prohibits the use of cost-saving strategies such as those used by the defendant regional centers. At the same time, the court rules that this does not give regional centers the authority to overspend their budgets. If regional center budgets are not sufficient, DDS must inform the state legislature which must, in turn, either increase funding or statutorily change the entitlement.

Expanded Stockton office

• Relocated branch office in San Andreas
• Initiated clinic for sight-impaired babies
• VMRC established as provider of continuing education credits for the Board of Registered Nursing

• Relocated branch office in Modesto
• First consumer elected to the VMRC Board of Directors
• Psycho-sexual and interdisciplinary psychiatric clinics established

• Key intake documents translated into other languages including Spanish, Vietnamese, Cambodian and Laotian
• Quality circles instituted
• Comprehensive Residential Policy Manual issued
• Employee Assistance program established through St. Joseph’s Medical Center
• Electronic mail initiated internally
• Parent Handbook completed

• Long Range Planning Committee formed
• Area VI Self Advocacy Council selected to be consumer advisory committee to the Board of Directors

Through an out-of-court settlement (William Coffelt et. al. v. Department of Developmental Services, et. al.) more than 2,000 residents from the state-run developmental centers will be placed into the community over a five-year period.

• Implemented California Early Start Program for 0-3 year olds
• Coffelt Settlement Agreement implemented
• Total Caseload: 5668, a 500% increase

• Occupied new building at 7109 Danny Drive
• VMRC initiated Self-Directed Work Teams

• VMRC adopts Foster Grandparent/Senior Companion Program

2008 – 2009:
While the country and the world experienced a major economic crisis, the developmental services system experienced the largest reductions in its history. There were over 50 different changes to the Lanterman Act to try to save money and these reductions reduced the regional center system’s budget by about a half billion dollars.

Richard Jacobs retires as the 2nd Executive Director of VMRC and Paul Billodeau becomes the agency’s 3rd Executive Director.

Senate Bill 1381, by Senator Fran Pavley, a bill to remove the “R-word” (Retarded) from California state law was signed by Governor Jerry Brown, Jr.  The “R-Word,” known to be a form of hate speech towards people with Intellectual and developmental disabilities, was replaced in statute by the new nationally recognized clinical terminology, Intellectual Disability. 

The California Lanterman Act adds the Employment First Policy and the Self-Determination Program.

The Legislature and Governor Jerry Brown, Jr. rescinded some of the changes in law made in 2008 and 2009 and made the first major funding commitment to developmental services in 20 years.  Funding priorities provided rate increases to providers and allowed VMRC to hire 27 service coordinators to reduce the high caseload rations.

Tony Anderson becomes the 4th Executive Director of VMRC.

VMRC holds it’s first annual Cultural Fair celebrating the diverse community it serves and showcases it’s providers and resources in it’s region.

The first consumer fully participating in their Self-Determination program (legislation passed in 2013 creating Self-Determination in the Lanterman Act).

Global Pandemic of COVID-19 forces all regional center to work remotely…