Monday Morning News Dump

April 26, 2021

Generally we “dump” what’s left on Friday, but needed the weekend to assemble all the “bits!” So here goes:

#1     For those who have had trouble with the link in the email from Licensing late Friday to register for the webinar on the US Attorneys Office’s expectations on ADA compliance for all Medicaid funded services – here is a link which we believe works:

We hope that the “slides” from the training will be available soon after so if you have questions you can share them with your counsel for clarification of your responsibilities.

#2     The increased minimum wage goes into effect on Saturday, May 1st; if any of your wages calculate to something lower than $9.50 per hour (~$19,760 annually) you need to be sure that you raise them to at least that amount!  The study on the impact of the increase on rates, ordered by the General Assembly and being completed by Burns & Associates for Medicaid, is partially complete (we believe that Phase 1 includes DD Waiver Services and that BH and SUD Services will be part of Phase 2) and a draft is in circulation for review.  It is our hope that the report is available for the General Assembly when they go into Special Session later this Spring (Summer?).

#3     We are working on gathering resources on the impact of three actions by the General Assembly governing the legal use of marijuana – the addition of “disability” to the Virginia Human Rights Act which could add protections for the use of medical marijuana – see below and which was also covered in HB 1862

§ 2.2-3902. Construction of chapter; other programs to aid persons with disabilities, minors, and the elderly.

The provisions of this chapter shall be construed liberally for the accomplishment of its policies.

Conduct that violates any Virginia or federal statute or regulation governing discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions including lactation, age, status as a veteran, disability, or national origin is an unlawful discriminatory practice under this chapter.

And the Governor’s decision to allow small amounts of marijuana to be grown and legally possessed; impairment policies are frequently written to cover use of alcohol or illegal drugs (check yours to see how they are written!)

#4     We continue to work on solutions for the most challenging parts of  new DD Waiver Regs, and the HCBS implementation – we’ll keep you posted.  This “End of Year” report was recently released – it will give some indication of what issues need to be addressed!