Minnesota Autism Spectrum Disorder Task Force
Function: The task force shall develop an autism spectrum disorder statewide strategic plan that focuses on improving awareness, early diagnosis, and intervention and on ensuring delivery of treatment and services for individuals diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, including the coordination and accessibliity of cost effective treatments and services throughout the individual's lifetime. The task force shall coordinate with existing efforts relating to autism spectrum disorders at the Departments of Education, Employment and Economic Development, Health, and Human Services and at the University of Minnesota and other agencies and organizations as the task force deems appropriate.
By January 15 of each year, the task force shall provide a report regarding its findings and considerations. The task force shall submit its strategic plan to the legislature by January 15, 2013. The task force shall continue to provide assistance with the implementation of the strategic plan, as approved by the legislature, and shall submit a progress report by January 15, 2014, and by January 15, 2015, on the status of implementation of the strategic plan, including any draft legislation necessary for implementation.
On May 17, 2008, the Minnesota Legislature adopted Senate Resolution 176, establishing an autism task force. The task force was comprised of 20 members, including legislators, representatives of state agencies, and other professionals with an interest in autism. The task force reviewed and studied the availability of programs and services provided to individuals with autism and their families. Additionally, the task force assessed services provided for early screening, diagnosis, and treatment. The task force published its final report in March 2009 - see Report of the Minnesota Senate Autism Task Force.
Autism Spectrum Disorder Pilot Program, Task Force, Surveillance System and Registry - In 2009, legislation (HF 210, HF 233, SF 138, and SF 290) was introduced to establish an Autism Spectrum Disorder Pilot Program for children and young adults with autism spectrum disorders. A 13-member task force on autism spectrum disorders would be created to improve services provided and coordinated by state agencies, health providers and schools; to review the effectiveness of treatment methods and availability of health care providers. Members of the task force would include legislators, parents of a child or young adult with autism, health care providers, representatives from state agencies, and other professionals with an interest in autism.
The Task Force was convened October 13, 2009, meeting once or twice a month through June, 2011. The task force reviewed information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), and the work of Autism Task Forces/Councils in other states. Members reviewed information from various autism publications and research studies. Presenters included Minnesota Department of Human Services, Minnesota Department of Education, Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, Minnesota Health Department, state office holders, providers of early intervention services, parents, schools, doctors and Project Search, a job training partnership.
2014 Minn. Laws Chapter 291 Art. 8 Sec. 20 called for the autism spectrum disorder statewide strategic plan developed by the Minnesota Legislative Autism Spectrum Disorder Task Force to be implemented collaboratively by the commissioners of education, employment and economic development, health, and human services.
In 2014, $769,000 was appropriated for the development of an interagency Web site with autism-related resources for children and adults with autism spectrum disorder, their family members, and other interested parties. This is a onetime appropriation and expires on June 30, 2017.
The task force expires June 30, 2015, unless extended by law.
As of 2011, the Autism Spectrum Disorder Task Force is composed of 19 members, as follows:
(1) two members of the senate, one appointed by the majority leader and one appointed by the minority leader;
(2) two members of the house of representatives, one from the majority party, appointed by the speaker of the house, and one from the minority party, appointed by the minority leader;
(3) two members who are family members of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), one of whom shall be appointed by the majority leader of the senate, and one of whom shall be appointed by the speaker of the house;
(4) one member appointed by the Minnesota chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics who is a developmental behavioral pediatrician;
(5) one member appointed by the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians who is a family practice physician;
(6) one member appointed by the Minnesota Psychological Association who is a neuropsychologist;
(7) one member appointed by the majority leader of the senate who represents a minority autism community;
(8) one member representing the directors of public school student support services;
(9) one member appointed by the Minnesota Council of Health Plans;
(10) three members who represent autism advocacy groups, two of whom shall be appointed by the speaker of the house and one of whom shall be appointed by the majority leader of the senate; and
(11) one member appointed by each of the respective commissioners of the following departments: education, employment and economic development, health, and human services.
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