The Arc Michigan has been busy fighting against several harmful legislative proposals including:
- HB 4205, which would restrict the ability of state agencies to promulgate rules that go above federal requirements, such as Michigan’s requirement that public schools provide education to students with disabilities up until age 26, rather than the federal requirement of 21;
- HB 4598, which freezes enrollment in Medicaid Expansion after September 30, 2017; and
- Budget language shifting all Medicaid Benefits into managed care.
The Arc Wisconsin is advocating for a budget amendment to create a $5 million incentive fund to reward non-profit providers who improve compensation for DSPs. Because Wisconsin uses a managed care model, the state cannot directly increase rates for the purpose of increasing DSP wages. Incentive fund payments could be up to $1000 per full time employee and $500 per part time employee, depending on the number of applicants. Eligible providers must pay at least $10 per hour, contribute at least 70% of health insurance premiums, keep out-of-pocket health insurance costs below $4500, and contribute make an employer contribution of at least 3%; or pay at least $10 per hour and spend at least 65% of their general operating revenue on DSP salaries or benefits.
The Arc Michigan is opposing Section 298 of House Bill 4323, the omnibus budget bill, which requires the establishment of a single behavioral health managed care organization and pilot and integrated physical and behavioral health model. The Arc Michigan opposes moving to a managed care system because it would move control of the system from a board appointed by elected officials and subject to open meetings laws to private companies. Additionally, private health plans might not understand person-centered planning and individualized supports.
The Arc of Illinois supported and Governor Bruce Rauner signed HB 6213. This bill requires more frequent updates of managed care directories, clearer information about covered prescriptions, and a mechanism for reporting inaccurate information in said directories in order to give consumers timely and meaningful information and choice. They include accessible online tools.