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 Wednesday, April 24, 2019, the Senate Finance Committee started their hearings on the state operating budget (HB 166). The committee heard from Office of Budget and Management and the Legislative Services Commission. At issue for many legislators is the large difference in LSC’s and OBM’s numbers on revenue, with the Legislative Service Commission’s expected revenues coming in $500 million less than the Office of Budget and Management’s revenues.
On Thursday, April 25, 2019, the Senate Finance Committee held its second hearing on the state operating budget (HB 166). The committee heard testimony from the directors of the Departments of Medicaid, Mental Health and Addiction Services, and Job and Family Services. Director of Medicaid Maureen Corcoran testified that Medicaid caseloads in March increased in the Covered Families and Children category, and that staff was investigating whether the increase was the result of changes in redetermination, changes in the economy or other reasons. Corcoran also answered questions about the work requirement for Group VIII expansion enrollees, saying the state is looking at how to provide exemptions to the work requirement for “good cause.”
On Thursday, April 25, 2019, Disability Rights Ohio hosted a Budget Policy Summit to outline current budget proposals, and to provide self-advocates and others an opportunity to provide feedback and input. Director of Medicaid Maureen Corcoran and Director of DODD Jeff Davis outlined their visions for each of their agencies. Administration on Disabilities Commission Julie Hocker was the keynote speaker, sharing her personal story about attending college and finding work when natural and other supports were not always sufficient.
On Thursday, April 25, 2019, the House Committee on Administration, Subcommittee on Electionsheld a field hearing entitled “Voting Rights and Election Administration in Ohio,” at the Cuyahoga Community College. Multiple entities testified, outlining their concerns with the elimination of “golden week” where voters can register and vote at the same time. Other witnesses expressed concerns with the reduction in the number of polling locations in Ohio, explaining the reduced hours and locations make it harder for elderly and people with disabilities to vote.
NEXT Week in Public Policy: April 29 - May 3, 2019
On Tuesday, April 30, 2019, the Senate Finance, Health and Medicaid Subcommittee will hold its first hearing on the operating budget (HB166). The following agencies are scheduled to testify: Board of Nursing, Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage and Family Therapist Board, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Athletic Trainers Board, Ohio State Dental Board, Speech and Hearing Professionals Board and the State Board of Psychology. The hearing is scheduled to take place at 9:00 a.m. in the South Hearing Room of the Ohio Senate Building.
On Tuesday, April 30, 2019, the House Insurance Committee will hold PROPONENT Testimony on Senate Bill 9 (Health Plan Claim Information). The bill allows insurance companies to provide claim information to businesses that pay for insurance (but requires the identity of the claimant to be kept secret). The hearing will take place at 10:00 a.m. in Room 113 of the Ohio Statehouse.
On Thursday, May 2, 2019, the Senate Finance, Primary and Secondary Education Subcommittee will hold a hearing on the state budget (HB 166). Agencies scheduled to testify include: State Racing Commission, Ohio Facilities Construction Commission, Casino Control Commission, Ohio School for the Blind, Ohio School for the Deaf, and the Ohio Lottery Commission. The hearing will take place at 9:00 a.m. in the South Hearing Room of the Ohio Senate Building.
On Tuesday, April 30, 2019, the House Rules Committee will hold a hearing on HR 1384 (Medicare for All Act of 2019). Invited to testify are Dr. Dean Baker (Center for Economic and Policy Research), Dr. Sara Collins (The Commonwealth Fund), Dr. Doris Browne (National Medical Association), Dr. Farzon Nahvi (Emergency Room Physician), Mr. Ady Barkan (Be A Hero Organization), Ms. Grace-Marie Turner (Galen Institute), and Dr. Charles Blahous (Mercatus Center). The hearing is scheduled to take place at 10:00 a.m. in Room H-313 of the US Capitol.
On Tuesday, April 30, 2019, the House Financial Services Committee will hold a hearing entitled, “Housing in America: Assessing the Infrastructure Needs of America’s Housing Stock.” Invited to testify are: Diane Yentel, President and CEO of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, Adrianne Todman, CEO of the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, Steven Larson, Chairman of the Lawson Companies, and Daryl Carter, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Avantha Capital. The hearing is scheduled to take place at 10:00 a.m. in Room 2128 of the Rayburn House Office Building.
On Tuesday, April 30, 2019, the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education and Related Agencies has scheduled a markup hearing on the Fiscal Year 2020 Budgets for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies. The hearing is scheduled to take place at 4:00 p.m. in Room 2358-C of the Rayburn House Office Building. The live stream of this hearing will be available at https://www.congress.gov/event/116th-congress/house-event/109378.