The Iowa House on Tuesday approved a budget bill totaling nearly a billion dollars for the state’s human-services and public-health programs. The measure includes money for child welfare, the veterans’ home, and state-run homes for the mentally handicapped. The bill’s sponsor, Republican David Heaton of Mount Pleasant, says he thinks the best part is the increase in funding for in-home healthcare services for the disabled. Heaton says it’s the “happiest part of this bill” that almost two-thousand people with disabilities can finally get off a waiting list to receive services in their homes. He says some have waited on the list for two years. A majority of democrats in the House voted against the budget bill, saying it doesn’t do enough to protect children. One of those was Cedar Rapids Representative Robb Hogg. Hogg says every year in Iowa about 12-thousand kids are abused, including some 900 child sexual-abuse victims. He says Democrats wanted amendments that protected more kids, like in-home visitation, child-abuse prevention education, and more DHS social workers so they could follow up cases better. Hogg says the bill also continues to take money from the Senior Living Trust Fund. The bill now goes to the senate for debate.
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