LeadingAge Florida Legislative Updates
September 6, 2013
Participation Needed at Local Delegation Meetings
With all of the competing interests vying for legislators’ time, it is imperative that LeadingAge Florida members share issues facing our association.
Starting this month, members of the Florida Senate and House of Representatives representing each of the Florida's 67 counties’ Local Legislative Delegations will have their annual meetings. The delegations will receive input from local government officials and constituents before the start of the 2014 Legislative Session and are responsible for holding annual meetings in each county they represent to develop the county's legislative program. This includes all local bills, community appropriation requests, county and municipal legislative priorities and serving as a liaison between the Florida Legislature and communities.
That’s where you come in. We need you to attend your local delegation meetings and let the legislators know what is on the minds of LeadingAge Florida's members. Because there are so many Local Legislative Delegations, the best way to cover them all is to encourage other volunteers to attend and speak up! For your convenience, we have included a link to the list of 2013 Local Legislative Delegations along with LeadingAge Florida's 2013 Legislative Priorities. We will update you with the 2014 Legislative Priorities once they have been approved. If you need assistance with additional talking points, please let us know.
The list of Local Legislative Delegations, provided by the Florida House of Representatives, includes delegation members and contacts for the House and the Senate. Check with your delegation to confirm dates and times for local meetings. Please note deadlines for placing agenda items and submitting written materials and required registration forms. We suggest that you contact the delegation office prior to the posted deadline in order to give yourself adequate time to prepare any written materials and/or required registration forms.
One of the chief reasons LeadingAge Florida has had such tremendous legislative success is because of members like you. We encourage you to attend your respective delegation meeting. Let us know how the meeting(s) went and if we can assist you with any planning or issues as a result of the meeting.
View scheduled Local Legislative Delegation meetings here.
Legislative Wrap Up – May 14, 2013 [PDF]
Week Nine - May 3, 2013 [PDF]
Week Eight- April 26, 2013 [PDF]
Week Seven- April 19, 2013 [PDF]
Week Six - April 12, 2013 [PDF]
Week Five - April 5, 2013 [PDF]
Week Four - March 29, 2013 [PDF]
Week Three - March 22, 2013 [PDF]
Week Two - March 15, 2013 [PDF]
Week One - March 8, 2013 [PDF]
2013 Legislative Budget Update
After two weeks of hard work and numerous committee meetings, including working on the weekend, the final budget report was placed on the desk of the Florida Legislature just after 1 p.m. today. This starts the constitutionally mandated 72-hour "cooling off" period before the Legislature can take a final vote on the $74.5 billion spending plan. This is the only bill the Florida Legislature must pass before adjournment or “Sine Die.” The final spending plan is a larger version than the House, and the Senate passed earlier in the 60-day session as well as the proposal Governor Rick Scott pitched back in February.
We are still studying the relevant documents, but the following contains some of the major issues of interest to our LeadingAge Florida member’s communities:
- There were no cuts to nursing homes
Home and Community Based Services
- New PACE slots for:
- Hillsborough County (75),
- Lee (100),
- Palm Beach (100) and
- Broward (50).
More information will be forthcoming.
March 28, 2013
2013 Legislative Budget Update
The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Health and Human Services and the House Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee released their “Chair’s Recommendations.” This represents the first draft of the budget proposal created mostly by committee chairs and staff. The full House and full Senate Appropriations committees are scheduled to take up the appropriations bills during the first week of April. They will amend subcommittee proposals and pass a full appropriations bill for action the following week on their respective chamber floors. We anticipate the Budget Conference Meeting process to likely begin around April 20, whereby committees comprised of House and Senate members work together to resolve differences in their respective budgets.
The list below contains some of the major issues in both the Senate and House chairmen’s recommendations.
• There were no cuts to nursing homes
• 2,415 additional Long –term Care Diversion Waiver slots
• Provides funding for the Medicaid Electronic Health Records Incentive Program
• 100 new PACE slots in Hillsborough County
• Affordable Housing: The Senate has $70 million for SHIP
• There are no cuts to nursing homes. The Chair’s recommends maintaining Medicaid reimbursement for nursing home care at current funding levels
• 200 additional slots in the Assisted Living Facility Wavier
• 1880 additional Long –Term Care Diversion Waiver slots
• Funding for an additional 100 PACE slots in Lee County
• Provides funding for the Medicaid Electronic Health Records Incentive Program
• Affordable Housing: The House has no money allocated at this time
To stay informed about the budget and other legislative issues that LeadingAge Florida is following, don’t miss our Weekly 2013 Legislative Advocacy Briefing Conference Calls every Friday at 10 a.m. EDT. Click here to register for the conference calls and receive call-in details.
January 30, 2013
Earlier today at a press conference, Governor Rick Scott released his proposed $74.2 billion budget that would expand health-care and services to the disabled, give teachers and state employees raises, offer more tax cuts to businesses, and restores cuts to universities. The Governor explained his “Florida Families First” budget was made possible thanks to higher sales tax collections and the slow, but steady turnaround of Florida’s economy. Shortly after the press conference a press release from the Agency for Health Care Administration briefly highlighted some of the key health care issues with even a quote from LeadingAge Florida. To see the press release and other some of the background information please view the press release below. LeadingAge Florida is currently reviewing the proposed budget and we will have a more detailed explanation shortly.
2013 Legislative Priorities
This brief summary is provided to assist you when you are meeting with state legislators, candidates and other policy makers. The following are preliminary issues identified by LeadingAge Florida that are expected to be addressed during the 2013 Florida Legislative Session:
- Support preservation of current sales tax exemptions applicable to "homes for the aged" and non-profit organizations
- Support safeguards for Medicaid Long-Term Managed Care
- Oppose futher Medicaid cuts to nursing homes
- Maintain the moratorium on nursing home certificate of need
- Oppose efforts to shift money from the affordable housing trust fund to other state funded programs
- Support resonable governmental oversight for assisted living reforms
- Support AHCA regulatory reduction
December 11, 2012
Revised 2013 Income Limits
HUD has just issued another posting of income limits briefing material, dated Monday, December 10, 2012, for 2013 income limits.
There was a problem with the calculations used in the previously released set. Please take a look and see how it impacts, if at all, the limits you learned of on the 5th (or 6th) that were meant to go into effect on the 4th.
See below for the previously released Update
LeadingAge to Conduct Call-ins Sessions for Section 202 Refinancing
HUD has established over the past few months new rules for refinancing Section 202 mortgages going forward that include the elimination of debt service savings accounts established under the refinancing. At the same time, HUD issued new guidance for renewing Section 8 contracts and requesting budget based rent increases, guidance which includes the use of current debt service, a market test, and depending on the HUD office, refusal to recognize debt service savings accounts in future budgets.
Because some sponsors seeking to refinance their Section 202 project have been impacted by having to reconfigure refinancing requests that were close to their closing dates or have experienced other issues with previously refinanced Section 202 projects, LeadingAge will be offering a series of two calls-in sessions to learn how Section 202 sponsors are addressing refinancing issues as relates to HUD's contradictions between preservation and asset management policies.
The first call-in session scheduled for Friday, December 14 at 2 pm EST will focus on Section 202 refinancing that have not yet closed, but may have been in progress or close to closing when the new policies were announced.
The second call-in session scheduled for Monday, December 17 at 2 pm EST will focus on the apparent lack of consideration of 202 mortgages that have already been refinanced in adopting the new renewal guide policies, particularly for those that did not get a 20 year contract at refinancing or last renewal.
If members are interested in participating in either of these two call-ins, you will need to RSVP to LeadingAge in order to get the call-in numbers and other logistics for participation. LeadingAge would encourage, but not require, participants to provide them in advance with a brief description of your situation and current status.
Please Call Your Congressman Now to Protect CharitiesDecember 10, 2012
On Monday, December 10, 2012 you may have received a message from LeadingAge President and CEO Larry Minnix urging the LeadingAge members to find time to call their Congressman on this important issue. As charitable entities, the proposed caps on deductions jeopardize the mission-driven care we provide, and those in need of our charity. We'll be placing our calls, and ask that everyone who values the care and services that charities provide do so as well.
As Larry stated in his email:
"The charitable sector is under silent siege. It has become embroiled in the need to address our country's fiscal woes, which certainly need to be addressed. But, if we have cut back on entitlement programs that help those in need, we will need more donors and donations -- not fewer. Right now, proposals are floating on Capitol Hill that will cap charitable deductions at a time when people are in great need of charity, and institutions that enrich our culture are in need of donations -- perhaps more than ever. Just last week, one of our distinguished leaders, Audrey Weiner, the LeadingAge Board Chair, reported to me that she had contacted her members of Congress, who said they are hearing no expressions of concern about capping the charitable deduction! This is alarming! Without public outcry, Congress may well create a hole that we may not be able to fill.
So, here is what I am asking of all of you:
- Read the Johns Hopkins University Listening Post report on nonprofits by Lester Salamon, and make it part of your Board meetings.
- Read and sign on to the letter from the Independent Sector, a remarkable organization that represents every corner of the charitable sector. Join the chorus of supporters, which includes nearly 1,000 organizations like yours.
- Call 888-277-8686 all this week and repeat our mantra to your legislators:
"The needs of people are never capped. Nor should we cap the charitable deductions to help them."
We all have a need to give. Many of us will have the need to receive.
This disincentive for charitable donations punishes the vulnerable and those who seek to help them. There are fairer ways to generate tax dollars as well as prudent ways to cut expenses. Instead of further enlarging the hearts of our communities, a cap on charitable deductions could shrink them. We provide this information to you only as a courtesy, there is a timely FREE webinar entitled "The Fiscal Cliff's Twin Threats Against the Work of Charities" Provided by BoardSource.
Wednesday, December 12
3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. ET
Two parts of the fiscal cliff threaten to create massive new burdens on nonprofits and even more work for board leaders. Because of the urgency of this issue, BoardSource has quickly arranged a special webinar to alert our community.
Join Tim Delaney, president and CEO of the National Council of Nonprofits, to learn how the fiscal cliff's scheduled cuts and proposed caps represent twin threats to the work of nonprofits serving individual Americans and local communities. By making funding cuts without reducing the underlying human needs, the demand on nonprofits will increase while the resources for providing needed services will decrease. Capping charitable deductions will further reduce the ability of charitable organizations to meet the increasing need for services.
Register now to learn more about these potentially devastating threats and what each of us can do NOW to voice our views.December 7, 2012
On December 4, 2012, the 2013 income limits were released for HUD multi-family programs.
Effectively immediately, HUD multi-family property managers must use the new income limits posted on the HUDUser website.
The new income limits must be used for all new move-in transactions starting with move-ins effective Dec. 4, 2012. Income limits do not apply to existing residents (annual and interim certifications) since income eligibility is determined at move-in. See HUD Handbook 4350.3 Revision 1, Change 3, Paragraphs 3-4.
Due to the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-289) these income limits may not be applicable to projects financed with Section 42 Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) or section 142 tax exempt private equity bonds. These projects should use the Multifamily Tax Subsidy Project Income Limits.
Legislative Archive Pages
- LeadingAge 2012 Issues Outlook
- Florida TaxWatch Sales Tax Exemptions Study
- 2012 Election Voter Education, Candidates Forum & Advocacy Tool Kit
- Provisions Relevant to Aging Services Technologies - Health Care Reform Bill (H.R. 3590) " Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" as Signed into Law March 23, 2010
- Governor’s signing letter for HB787
- BGS Letter to Providers Regarding HB 943