CASA funding in danger of being cut

52_casa-nwenergy_1133NICE DONATION  — Scott Patera, Manager for Community Relations for NorthWestern Energy, Great Falls, presents check for $500 to Stacy Eneboe, president of CASA on Wednesday.  I-O Photo by Barb Stratman





Front Range CASA/GAL, Inc. is asking for your support in restoring funding to the National CASA Association. In recent history, National CASA has received $12 million from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. This funding has been removed totally from the new federal budget.

At this time, there is a chance those funds may be restored if the Congress understands how important this money is to serving the children in need. The CASA/GAL programs in Montana have received $390,000 in various types of grants from National CASA in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Presently, there is little optimism about the chances for Montana CASA/GAL programs to receive money from National CASA during 2012.

Fifteen CASA programs in Montana are serving 1,200 abused and neglected children with 475 volunteers in 41 counties. In 2011, those volunteers spent 34,075 hours serving the kids. At the rate of $60 an hour, which is what the attorney GALs are paid when a volunteer is not available, the CASA volunteers have saved the state of Montana $2,044,500 in just one year.

In 2012, the case loads have grown throughout most of the state. With the case load increases, the savings to the state increase. Our local programs are feeling the pressure of increased case loads that strain their already inadequate budgets.

Please send a message to our congressional delegation in Washington supporting the restoration of funding for National CASA.

Contact information for Senators Tester and Baucus, as well as Representative Rehberg:

Senator Jon Tester

724 Hart Senate Office Building

Washington, DC 20510-2604

Phone: (202) 224-2644

Fax: (202) 224-8594

Senator Max Baucus

511 Hart Senate Office Building

Washington, DC 20510

Phone: (202) 224-2651

Fax: (202) 224-9412

Representative Denny Rehberg

2448 Rayburn House Office Bldg

Washington, DC 20515-2601

Phone: (202) 225-3211

Fax: (202) 225-5687