Oregon's Legislature is now rapidly moving towards adjournment. With a goal of attempting to conclude by the end of February, we now have all policy committees closed down and only Ways & Means, Rules, Revenue and potentially any other joint committee is now meeting or able to convene. We have seen the bill numbers that appear to represent the 'end of session' bills, otherwise known as the "Christmas Tree Bill" and the associated program change bill (see below).
Advocates have joined with O4AD in strongly advocating for the reinstatement of funding for the Gatekeeper program. Working with the Campaign for Oregon's Seniors & People with Disabilities, HSCO and others, the message has been delivered on the need to provide funding and support to cost effective programs. However, the looming budget issues of the 2017-19 budget are not far from Legislators minds as they are fearful of enacting new programs now that will only be subject to consideration for reduction with the 17-19 budget forecast.
17-19 brings a wave of concern for Legislators as they face some large issues in that biennium. This includes:
- Projected obligation for PERS that will need to be addressed at the state and local levels
- Adjustment to Federal dollars that are coming into Oregon to help implement health system transformation. Federal participation will begin to decline during the 2017-19 biennium
- Projected caseload increases with the Department of Human Services and rise in costs per case
- Ramifications from other Federal rulings and adjustments
THANK YOU to everyone who has engaged, advocated and been a part of the process all during the session!
Bills of interest
As we head to the end of session, there have been many bills followed. Below please find status on bills we have been following:
SB 5701: This bill is currently listed as "Budget Rebalance" which is in general considered the "Christmas Tree" bill, or the budget bill that makes adjustments for the remainder of the 15-17 biennium. This bill will be 'gutted' from its original form to add budget adjustments.
SB 1597: This bill is listed as "Program Change" which indicates it will contain the necessary statutory adjustments to implement the budget adjustments made in SB 5701. These bills generally move together through the process at the end of the session. And are often gutted from the original language.
HB 4013: This bill would have created multidisciplinary elderly or vulnerable person facility review team to look at trends, review cases and make recommendations. This bill is now not moving forward.
HB 4017A: This bill addresses the Basic Health potential program and specifies requirements for a feasibility study. This bill is still moving forward within the Ways & Means process.
HB 4042: This bill would create a General Assistance project, capped to 200 participants per month, within the Department of Human Services with a Housing First approach and focus. This bill appears to be moving forward in the Ways & Means process.
HB 4083A: This bill would create a task force to look at care within Memory Care units. While in Ways & Means, it is projected that this bill will not move forward.
HB 4100: This bill would call for CCOs to become community based non-profit organizations beginning in 2023. This bill is not moving forward.
HJR 202A: This would refer an amendment to the Constitution that would require a percentage of lottery revenues to be directed to benefit Veterans. While this was passed on the House side, it is currently sitting in Senate Finance & Revenue with no work session scheduled to date. The proponents of the bill are unsure if this is moving ahead.
Please check HERE for our latest bill tracking report. O4AD will continue to update you as we head to the end of this 2016 Legislative session.
And please contact Nicole at O4AD with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org