Your INARF staff and consultants have been busy over the past few weeks ensuring that HB 1001 stays on track for passage. Following is a synopsis of those recent activities around HB 1001.
On Tuesday, March 14, INARF staff and consultants met with several FSSA staff regarding HB 1001. At the meeting FSSA officials discussed their fiscal analysis of our proposed legislation, concerns regarding the verification language and process, and the possibility of an April 2018 implementation date.
On March 20, Steve Cook and Kelli Waggoner met with Lt. Governor Crouch regarding several items including HB 1001. Later that day, the Lt. Governor had a scheduled meeting with Michael Gargano, Deputy Secretary and Chief of Staff for FSSA. Following this meeting, Gargano informed Kelli Waggoner that he would be meeting with FSSA staff to discuss concerns about the April 2018 implementation date. Gargano subsequently met with FSSA staff and, following that meeting, Kylee Hope, the DDRS Director, told Steve Cook that DDRS would figure out how to make an earlier (earlier than April 2018) implementation date work.
At the regular INARF lobbyist meeting, a lobbyist for an INARF member agency volunteered to meet with Rep. Tim Brown, Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee regarding INARF’s concerns on the April 2018 timing of HB 1001. That meeting took place with Chairman Brown promising to discuss the issue further with Sen. Kenley.
Tracy Mitchell has authored some final edits to our language to clarify several items discussed at the March 14th meeting with FSSA. The INARF executive committee reviewed and approved these proposed changes to HB 1001 via email on March 21st.
This revised version was submitted to the four (4) caucus fiscal analysts, Paul Bowling, Joe Moser, Michael Gargano, Gus Habig and Kylee Hope on March 21st.
No one has expressed any concerns with the latest revisions to the current HB 1001 language.
Meanwhile, Steve requested that an INARF member contact the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disability Services to inquire as to how long Indiana’s Waiver amendments establishing the new rates and increasing the FSW cap might take to get approved at CMS, and whether or not the changes to the Waiver are substantive. This is important because if CMS considers the changes substantive, then changes to the Waiver can only be made prospectively. If the changes are deemed non-substantive, then the Waiver rate change can be done retrospectively (to July 1, 2017 as long as the Waiver is submitted by Sept. 30, 2017). NASDDDS staff’s opinion was that the changes were not substantive.
Senator Kenley is aware that we are working directly with David Reynolds (fiscal staff for Sen. Kenley) regarding changes to HB 1001. Tracy Mitchell has already made direct contact with David on these most recent changes to HB 1001. The Senate Appropriations Committee will be taking committee action on HB 1001 this Thursday, March 30th. At this point we have no indication that the funding and 5% rate increase in HB 1001 will be changed by Senate Appropriations. We encourage members, your staff, and board members to continue to reach out to members of the Senate Appropriations Committee if you live in their districts and to continue to educate all Senators about our budget request in preparation for Senate floor votes on the budget bill next week.
INARF has initiated contact with the Region V CMS office to discuss the potential waiver amendments associated with HB 1001. In addition, INARF has initiated contact with Brian Neale, the Director of the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services, and Luke Messer, representing the 6th District of Indiana, to ensure that the anticipated Indiana’s Waiver amendments will be processed as quickly as possible once it reaches CMS. Brian reports directly to Seema Verma, CMS administrator.
We hope this information is helpful. If you have questions, please contact Steve Cook or Sarah Chestnut.