Ritter camp: Closure of Regional Center has ‘flexibility’

Gov. Bill Ritter’s deadline to close the skilled-nursing facility at the Grand Junction Regional Center still holds, but there is “some flexibility,” his spokesman said.

“If there are those who need more time, then they will have more time,” Ritter spokesman Evan Dreyer said. “The governor is very committed to that.”

Opponents of closing the 32-bed facility said Monday that officials in the state Department of Human Services told them Sunday the deadline for closure had been extended.

The February closure deadline still holds, Dreyer said.

That’s substantially what families, guardians and employees were told by the governor, said Dennis Brady, whose son, Tyler, is a client there.

“They just said the unit would not be closed until the last person is moved,” Brady said.

Ritter ordered the center closed as a budget-cutting move and Dreyer said officials are “working as quickly as possible” to find space for them in community, residential or group-home settings.

The developmentally disabled clients won’t be moved until relatives and guardians are satisfied with their new locations, Ritter assured people protesting the closure Saturday at the Club 20 fall meeting.

“This is going to be a process that will take some time,” Brady said. “The way I feel is I’m not going to rush it to accommodate the state.”


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