News You Should Know

March 26, 2019

Sometimes the information that we want to share is such a mixed bag that it is impossible to find a common thread other than that above:
  • The “reconvened session” of the General Assembly is April 3rd; that is when the Governor and General Assembly reach agreement (we hope) on both Legislation and the Budget.  A couple of items of interest are
    • The Governor is requesting through a budget amendment the elimination of driver’s license suspensions for non-payment of fines and costs; the legislation that would have done that was defeated so this is a new approach.
    • The Governor is also going to continue his push to have the funding to rebuild Central State Hospital. And,
    • We have every reason to believe that he will support the budget language to block the implementation of the supports packages; even though both the House and the Senate approved language which prohibited implementation without the explicit authority of the General Assembly, DBHDS has continued to “pilot” in several areas of the state!
  • On the Federal level the Justice Department is agreeing with the district court’s opinion that without the “individual mandate tax” required by the ACA and eliminated by Congress effective January 1, 2019, the individual mandate that all individuals obtain health coverage can not be enforced.  As that is central to the ACA as a whole, the court has essentially eliminated the ACA.  The action is under appeal.
  • On a non-legislative issue, the comment period on the DD-Waiver regs is still open – please take advantage of your opportunity!
  • And finally, a contingent of the VNPP Board of Directors met today with the Agency leads for Behavioral Health Redesign; it was a promising meeting and we think we have begun a good dialogue about including business and operational issues in Stage 1 of the Redesign plan.  Stay tuned!