§16-5K-1. Legislative findings and statement of purpose.

The Legislature hereby finds and declares that early intervention services for children who are developmentally delayed is essential in helping to maximize each child's potential and is in the best interest of the state. These early intervention services will reduce future educational costs, minimize the likelihood of having to provide institutional care and enhance the capacity of families to meet the special needs of the children. In order to meet this important need, a statewide comprehensive, coordinated, interagency program of early intervention services is required for children and the families of children from birth to thirty-six months of age who are developmentally delayed. By facilitating coordination of payment for early intervention services from various public and private sources, enhancing the capacity to provide quality early intervention services, and expanding and improving existing services, the interagency program will ensure that children who are developmentally delayed will receive necessary services which are cost effective.