Session Wrap-up and Other Things

March 09, 2019

Session Wrap-up:

Two weeks ago I posted a short summary of the “Conference Report” for the FY2020 Budget – the General Assembly passed the budget (including all conference committee amendments) almost unanimously and only one day late!  The budget is now in the hands of the Governor, who can of course veto or amend certain items.  We have no reason to think that any of the items included on the attached more detailed listing of relevant amendments will be altered. Remember that the amendments are supplemental to the budget, so other items (such as Waiver Slots allocated for FY 2020) are still in place. In addition to the Budget there were several bits of legislation that directly impact us as providers; here are the summaries of some that passed and either have been signed or are awaiting the Governor’s signature.  To put this in perspective – there were exactly 2,000 bills (not including “Resolutions”) introduced, 883 of those passed and the Governor has acted on 245 to date!

National News:

The US Department of Labor has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the issue of which employees will be eligible for overtime.  You may remember this Rule was published during the Obama administration (Search the VNPP News Post using the word “overtime” to get some of the history) with a threshold for when overtime had to be paid that would have included those making approximately $48,000 or less.  The current salary threshold is that employees paid less than $23,660 must be overtime eligible; the revised proposal being released this week is to raise that threshold to $35,308. We have supported this effort as a matter of fairness and, along with our Association partners at ANCOR, appreciate that the increase will be more moderate than that originally proposed.  The rule will be out for public comment, and you should definitely express your opinion.

Other DBHDS/DMAS News:

The Quality Improvement Committee (DBHDS) has been focusing a lot of attention of DD Case Management in the past year – as activities which change what Case Managers do and focus on frequently impact providers, I have included the most recent presentation here. On the Behavioral Health side – VNPP convened a small workgroup to develop a response to the Behavioral Health Redesign (it used to be called “transformation”) plan.  We continue to actively participate in the discussions and have a meeting scheduled with Drs Ward (DMAS) and Aplasca (DBHDS) to discuss our issues both pro and con in more detail.  We will focus our attention on the business aspects to promote the concept of why we have to have a sustainable business model in order to succeed in any system of care. Also, we were delighted to hear this week that Caliber (in addition to VACBP) will be contracting for DLA-20 Training for their members.  It is exciting that the idea that we planted at our conference last Fall has taken root with other Associations!  We will be asking representatives of both Caliber and VACBP to meet soon to try to come to agreement on the data elements to collect.  For VNPP members who were not able to come to the Train-the-Trainer Sessions in February, the VNPP Certified Trainer will be available later this Spring to train your staff!