This Week in Public Policy provides a summary of policy and legislation in Ohio and at the federal level that is of interest to people with disabilities.
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On Thursday, the House Aging and Long Term Care Committee held ALL Testimony on House Bill 572 (PERS – County Board School Employees). The bill would fix a change in law that said that the school employees of a county board of developmental disabilities could not earn a full year credit in the Public Employees Retirement System because they only worked 9 months out of the year. Nobody was present to testify on the bill. The committee adopted a substitute bill, which was described by the bill’s sponsor to include a provision to allow accrual of a full credit effective January of 2017. This provision would make the bill “retroactive”, which generally is prohibited by the Ohio Constitution. However, the effort is to make sure that school employees of a county board of developmental disabilities do not lose out on service credit they have historically been earning. The substitute bill passed out of the committee unanimously.
On Friday, Ohio celebrated the two year anniversary of STABLE Accounts.
On Tuesday, May 22, 2018, Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) along with Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman introduced legislation that would delay implementation of the Electronic Visit Verification requirement by 1 year. Senate Bill 2897 was referred to the Committee on Finance.
NEXT Week in Public Policy: June 4 - 8, 2018
On Tuesday, June 5, 2018, the Senate Health, Human Services and Medicaid Committee will hold a hearing on several issues of interest. The committee will consider the Governor’s appointments to the State Speech and Hearing Professionals Board. Individuals appointed include: Tammy Brown, Lisa Froehlich, Helen Mayle, Karen Mitchell, Barbara Prakup, Michael Pratt, Carrie Spangler and Matthew Starner. The committee will also hold testimony on the following bills of interest:
Senate Bill 218 (Surety Bonds/Medicaid Training). The committee will hold ALL Testimony on SB 218. The bill proposes to require certain providers of Medicaid services (Independent Providers, Ambulettes, Home Health Agencies) to obtain and maintain a surety bond and to complete training. The bill’s sponsor and proponents claim the bill would reduce Medicaid fraud, either purposeful or accidental. The bill exempts those individuals who provide services to a family member from the requirement to obtain “insurance”. Only one proponent, from the state auditor’s office, has provided testimony. The hearing will take place at 3:15 p.m. in the South Hearing Room of the Ohio Senate Building.
Senate Bill 243 (Medicaid Copayments). The committee will hold ALL Testimony on SB 243. The bill would exempt individuals with disabilities whose sole income is from SSI/SSDI from having to pay the Medicaid Co-Payment. According the bill’s sponsor, individuals who are institutionalized are exempted from the requirement to pay a copayment, but individuals who live in the community must pay the copayment. The sponsor also indicated the state collects roughly $225,000 per year from individuals with disabilities whose sole income is SSI/SSDI for copayment of their Medicaid covered services. This hearing will also take place at 3:15 p.m. in the South Hearing Room.
On Wednesday, June 6, 2018, the House Education and the Workforce Committee will hold a hearing entitled, “Examining the Policies and Priorities of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.” Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex M. Azar, II is scheduled to testify. The hearing will take place at 10:00 a.m. in Room 2175 of the Rayburn House Office Building.
On Wednesday, June 6, 2018, the House Committee on Ways and Means, Subcommittee on Health will hold a hearing entitled, “Lowering Costs and Expanding Access to Health Care through Consumer-Directed Health Plans.” The hearing will likely focus on specialized health insurance options such as Health Savings Accounts. The hearing will take place at 11:00 a.m. in Room 1100 of the Longworth House Office Building.
On Thursday, June 7, 2018, the House Committee on Ways and Means, Subcommittee on Social Security will hold a hearing entitled, “Examining Social Security’s Solvency Challenge: The Status of Social Security’s Trust Funds.” The hearing will take place at 11:00 a.m. in Room 1100 of the Longworth House Office Building.
Save the Date!
2019 DD Awareness & Advocacy Day
Tuesday, March 5, 2019