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Officials want disability center kept open for evaluation

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) _ State officials want to keep open for at least three more years the Nebraska center for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities.

The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services officials announced that preliminary recommendation during a public hearing Tuesday in Lincoln. Officials say they need more time for a thorough evaluation of the Beatrice State Developmental Center as well as evaluations of other care options.

Eric Evans, CEO of Disability Rights Nebraska, says his group supports the three-year plan but still thinks the center should be closed for good because its continued operation “is not sustainable economically.”

The center has experienced turbulence over the past 12 years, with incidents of resident abuse, staff turnover and seven years of federal oversight.

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