“I’ve been seeking funding for the Care and Treatment Board for many years,” says Jim Runyon with Easterseals Central Illinois. “This is the first year that they’re able to fund every single request fully. And that was really due to the increase in the tax levy that the voters agree to this past year.”

With the help from Peoria County voters in 2016 to increase the property tax levy, five local organizations now get funding to continue their services for people with developmental disabilities.

“The additional money will help us in providing placement services to our individuals in community jobs and also work with our adult day services,” says Patti Gratton, executive director at CWTC.

And this additional funding could not have come at a better time.

“For our adult day services program, there is a gap of funding of 90 days,” says Gratton. “So we are providing services basically for 90 days without funding. So this will help support that program.”

Over at Easterseals of Central Illinois, the money will help them serve more people in the area.

“Only half of the kids in Peoria County who may have a developmental disability or developmental delay are being identified/being served,” says Runyon. “So we’re using those funds to really go out in Peoria County and seek those children and bring them into our services.”

All five of these agencies are grateful for the support from the community.

“For the voters of Peoria County to say we value all of our citizens, especially those with developmental disability and we’re willing to put more money into making sure that they are fully integrated into our community, that’s a great step,” says Runyon.

Camp Big Sky, EP!C, and Heart of Illinois Special Recreation Association will also benefit from this increased property tax levy.