LDC public hearing set
[JULY 9, 2002]
Lincoln Mayor Beth
Davis received the following notice from the Illinois Health
Facilities Planning Board:
Discontinuation and Closure of
Lincoln Developmental Center
Legal Notice of Public Hearing
and Opportunity for Written Comment
In accordance with the
requirements of the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Act
and 77 Illinois Adm. Code Part 1140. Notice is given of a
Public Hearing on an application for permit for a proposed
construction and/or modification project (Project # 02-042)
from Illinois Department of Human Services, Office of
Developmental Disabilities, Springfield, IL. This project
proposes the discontinuation and closure of Lincoln
Developmental Center, located at 861 S. State Street in
Lincoln, IL. There is no project cost.
The Public Hearing is to be held
by the Illinois Department of Public Health pursuant to the
Illinois Health Facilities Planning Act. The Hearing is
open to the public and will afford an opportunity for parties
at interest to present written and/or verbal comment relevant
to the project. All
allegations or assertions should be supported with two copies
of documentation or materials that are preferably printed or
typed on paper size 8½" by 11".
The hearing will be held on July
15, 2002. The public hearing will begin at 9:00 a.m. at the
Knights of Columbus, Fitzpatrick Hall, located at 215 N. Limit
Street, Lincoln, Il.
Persons with special needs should
contact Branwyn Giberson at (217) 782-3516 (hearing impaired
only, TTY (800) 547-0466)
For additional information call
(217)782-3516 (hearing impaired only, TTY # 800-547-0466) or
by letter no later than two days prior to the meeting date.
Patricia M. Sweitzer
State of Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board
525 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois, 62761
Last June Gov. George
Ryan and the Department of Human Services announced a decision to
close the 125-year-old facility completely, after citing issues of
abuse and neglect and concern for the safety of its residents.
On July 1, Logan
County Circuit Judge Donald Behle ruled that the Illinois Health
Facilities Planning Board must issue a permit before the Lincoln
facility could be closed. By law the board must hold a public
hearing before making a decision, if such a hearing is requested.
[Photo by Bob Frank]
[LDC resident and father beneath the pressured
gaze of Gov. George Ryan (note face in background)]
Members of the Health Facilities
Planning Board do not attend the public hearings, but a hearing
officer and a court reporter will be present, according to Jena
Welliever, spokesperson for the Illinois Department of Public
A transcript of the testimony given at
the hearing as well as written testimony will be compiled and
included in a report that will go to all board members, she said.
The board, which includes members from
both the Chicago area and downstate, is tentatively scheduled to
meet on Aug. 15. Before they meet they will announce a last date on
which they will accept written testimony.
[to top of second column in
The board may vote on a decision Aug.
15 or may continue the hearing process and ask for more information.
Either the applicant for the permit or the board can request a
continuance, Welliever said.
According to the statute that created
the planning board, its function is to reverse trends of increasing
health care costs and also guarantee availability of quality health
care to the general public.
The state says all interested people
attending a public hearing shall be given "reasonable opportunity to
present their views or arguments in writing or verbally."
Judge Behle also
issued a temporary restraining order that blocked the state from
moving any residents who did not want to leave LDC. However,
state-appointed representatives had already approved the movement of
51 residents who are wards of the state. They were allowed to be
transferred from the Lincoln facility after being notified of the
court order and given a chance to reconsider their decisions, Behle
According to Kathleen
Muniz, assistant associate director of the Office of Developmental
Disabilities, 40 of those residents have already been moved from LDC
and 10 more are scheduled to leave today.
"When all is said and
done, we will have moved 50 people," she said. Because of the
temporary restraining order, the other 190 residents will stay at
the Lincoln facility at least until the IHFPB decides whether it
should be closed, she said.
All but one of the 50
residents went to other state-operated facilities. One was placed in
a community home. The rest went to facilities in Jacksonville,
Tinley Park, Park Forest, Dwight, Kankakee and Centralia, according
She said there are no plans to lay
off any more LDC staff members at this time.