Affiliate Update 2012

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7-26-12 CP News

7/26/2012 4:13:06 PM

An HTML version of the 7-26-12 CP News can be found here.

 

7/26/12 Affiliate Update

(Volume #18 – Issue #9)

NEW YORK STATE’S MEDICAID SPENDING $30 MILLION BELOW GLOBAL CAP FOR APRIL 2012

The Department of Health’s (DOH) April Medicaid Global Spending Cap Report for the first month of the state fiscal year (SFY) 2012-2013 shows that expenditures are $30 million, or 2.5% under projections. State share Medicaid spending for SFY 2012-2013 is capped at $15.9 billion, as enacted by the most recent state budget. 

The report includes sector-specific spending trends and explanations for variation in each provider sector, as well as a delineation of the budgeted $600 million increase over SFY 2011-2012 spending. The report states that the $600 million will include costs associated with price increases such as managed care premiums, pharmacy, and fee-for-service rate changes to inpatient, outpatient, and nursing homes that still await Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) approval; and enrollment growth, which increased by 31,000 in April 2012, reaching 5,094,363 enrollees at the end of April 2012.

The April report states that Medicaid enrollment is projected to increase more slowly than the previous year. These increases will likely be offset by a net change in one-time revenue and spending actions as well as the continuation of Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT) initiatives. 

DOH and the Division of the Budget also announced they will conduct a Webconference in the next couple of weeks to discuss the details of the global spending cap projection model. We will let you know when it is scheduled.

-Barbara Crosier

REMEMBERING WILLOWBROOK

The Office for People With Developmental Disabilities has developed a Remembering Willowbrook exhibit that will be open to the public and traveling around the state through the end of the year. The exhibit profiles the history of the facility and commemorates the 40th anniversary of the Willowbrook exposé, and the 25th anniversary of its closure. There was a preview of the exhibit in Albany last week, and details of locations statewide will come soon. CP of NYS is working with OPWDD to host the exhibit at a location in New York City.

-Al Shibley

 

NGA CHAIR PUSHES EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES

Delaware Governor Jack Markell signed legislation recently making it easier for people with disabilities to work side-by-side with other employees, mirroring the initiative he is promoting during his yearlong tenure as chair of the National Governors Association (NGA).

According to the Alliance for Full Participation, a national organization that promotes employment for people with developmental disabilities, approximately 20 million of 70 million families in the U.S. have at least one member with a disability. People with disabilities in the U.S. reportedly have an annual spending power of $796 billion, more than any minority group.

Read more here.

-Al Shibley

DELORENZO NAMED ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER AT STATE ED

The Board of Regents recently approved the appointment of Jim DeLorenzo to the position of Assistant Commissioner for the Office of Special Education, a position previously held by Becky Cort.  Jim has many years of special education experience and has been with the State Education Department for over 24 years, most recently serving as State Director of Special Education. He began his career as a Reading Specialist and Special Education Teacher. CP of NYS looks forward to continuing to work closely with him on statewide special education issues.

 

-Al Shibley

 

PAUL TENDLER, RETIRED JAWONIO CEO, PASSES AWAY

Former Jawonio CEO and Executive Director Paul J. Tendler passed away on Sunday, July 22 in Delray, FL after a long battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife, Sandy, their three children and three grandchildren.

Paul worked at Jawonio for more than 30 years, serving as CEO from 1986 until his retirement from the agency in April 2009.

“Paul Tendler is synonymous with Jawonio,” said the organization’s CEO Jill Warner. “He always wanted to make sure that we treated each person with the dignity and respect they deserve, and to ensure families that when their loved one was in Jawonio’s care that they became and remained part of the Jawonio family.”

Funeral services were held on Tuesday, July 24 at Beth Israel Memorial Chapel in Boynton Beach, FL.

-Al Shibley

FEDERAL UPDATE 

 

Senate to Take up Middle Class Tax Cut Act

 

The Senate is expected to take up S.3412, a temporary extension of the tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 under the Presidency of George W. Bush. The bill will extend for 1 year the tax cuts for households earning under $250,000 per year. Advocates for people with disabilities support this bill to help ensure that revenue is raised fairly to pay for critical disability services and supports. Allowing the tax cuts to expire for households making over $250,000 a year (the top 2% of earners) would generate about $1 trillion. This funding is needed to help protect important disability programs (like Medicaid, Social Security, housing, education, and employment) from deep cuts and to reduce the deficit.

Help Protect Disability Programs - Call to End Tax Cuts for the Top 2 Percent

 

 

Appropriations – House Subcommittee Passes Labor-HHS-Ed Bill

 

 

The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (L-HHS-Ed) passed its FY 2013 Spending bill that funds the majority of disability-related programs. The bill passed along a near party line vote of 8 to 6 on July 18.  The Senate Appropriations committee passed its version of the bill last month. Again this year, the House subcommittee focused on reducing funding for implementation of the health care reform law. Specifically, the bill would rescind $1.6 billion for the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation and $15 million for the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which is charged with recommending steps to lower Medicare spending growth. Other targets included family planning services, the Department of Education’s Race to the Top program, and National Public Radio. As the bill provided for mostly top level numbers for federal agencies, obtaining funding amounts for most individual disability-related programs will not be available until the committee report is released.  However, in its press release the subcommittee noted:

 

  • Special Education grants to states are funded at $12.1 billion, a 4.3% increase over FY 2012.
  • The bill includes $10.7 billion to administer Social Security Administration activities, which is $287 million below fiscal year 2012.

 

 

Employment – Legislation Introduced to Block State TANF Waivers

 

Legislation was introduced in both the House and Senate last week to block the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) from granting waivers to states that could exempt them from work requirements under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. On July 12th HHS published an “Information Memorandum” (IM) indicating that it would consider such waivers. The IM provides examples of waivers that states may want to consider, including “projects that demonstrate strategies for more effectively serving individuals with disabilities, along with an alternative approach to measuring participation and outcomes for individuals with disabilities.” The Preserving Work Requirements for Welfare Programs Act of 2012 (H.R. 6140, introduced by Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI), and S.3397, introduced by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT)) would bar HHS from approving any waivers pursuant to the IM.  Most disability advocates oppose this legislation and support proposals to give states this flexibility to better serve people with disabilities in their TANF programs.

 

 

Medicaid/Long Term Services and Supports – Senate Hearing on Proposals for Dual Eligibles

 

The Senate Special Committee on Aging held a hearing about proposals being considered by the Medicare and Medicaid Coordination Office (MMCO) within the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) designed to integrate and coordinate care for individuals who are dually eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. Twenty-six states have submitted financial alignment proposals to CMS that could move as many as 2 million dually eligible individuals into demonstration programs. Senators asked about some states’ requests to enroll people into managed care plans without asking them if they wanted to join. MMCO Director Melanie Bella said that states must allow people to leave the managed care plans and enroll in another plan or in regular Medicare. Senators also raised concerns about whether managed care plans had the necessary expertise to provide services for dually eligible individuals.

  

 

Social Security – Hearing to Examine Overlap of SSDI and Unemployment Benefits

 

On Thursday, July 26th the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, held a hearing on "Double Dipping: Assessing Overlap Between Disability and Unemployment Benefits." According to the announcement, the hearing was to examine a new, not-yet-released report by the Government Accountability Office titled "Income Security: Overlapping Disability and Unemployment Benefits Should Be Evaluated for Potential Savings." 

 

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

 

July 26, 2012 will mark the 22th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This landmark civil rights law was created to eliminate discrimination against people based on their disabilities.

 

Federal Agencies Sign Agreement to Promote Employment First

 

 

The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD) have announced a new memorandum of agreement (MOA). Under the MOA, the agencies will collaborate to expand and promote integrated employment as the first employment option for individuals with significant disabilities, including intellectual and developmental disabilities.

 

 

-Barbara Crosier

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