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Overview and Mission
The Governor’s Council for Medical Research and Treatment of Autism (Council) was created by State appropriation in 1999 and has been issuing research, clinical and educational enhancement grants since 2000. As per P.L. 2007, c.174 the Council's initiatives are funded by a one dollar surcharge from motor vehicle violations and fines, which results in approximately $4 million being dedicated to autism research, treatment and education annually.
The Council's membership is made up of representatives from academic institutions, autism and healthcare organizations, appointees of the Senate President, Assembly Speaker and Commissioner of Health, a member from the general public, and an individual with autism or a family member with autism.
As detailed in P.L.2007, Chapter 168, the Council is to establish an Autism Center of Excellence in the State. First Lady Mary Pat Christie and Health Commissioner Mary E. O’Dowd, MPH joined the Council on June 28, 2012 to announce $3.7 million in grants to create the New Jersey Autism Center of Excellence (NJ ACE), marking a new, coordinated approach to autism research in New Jersey. The mission of the NJ ACE is to research, apply and advance best practices in the understanding, prevention, evaluation and treatment of autism spectrum disorders (ASD), enhancing the lives of individuals across their lifespans.
The NJ ACE initiative represents the Council’s and State’s commitment to advancing the current knowledge pool through clinical research leading to improvements in interventions that address the physical and behavioral health needs of children, adolescents and adults with ASD.
What is Autism?
For more information on autism, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.
The Council’s Establishing Legislation, P.L.2007, c.168.