Major Events Ahead
Budget & Appropriations: President’s Budget to be Released on February 9th
The Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 budget and appropriations process is expected to officially begin tomorrow when the President submits his budget request to Congress. The budget will include funding requests for all federal executive departments and independent agencies, including those that fund the majority of disability-related programs – the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Housing and Urban Development. See current FY 2016 program funding levels here.
Major Events Last Week
Health Care: House Fails to Override Veto of ACA Changes
On February 2, The House voted 241-186 to override the veto of H.R. 3762, “Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act” which repeals substantial parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The vote was short of the two-thirds majority needed to override a presidential veto. Among the provisions that would have been repealed are the penalties used to enforce the mandates that most individuals have health coverage and that large employers offer it to their workers. In 2018, it would have repealed the law’s Medicaid expansion and its subsidies to help low and middle-income individuals buy health coverage through the new insurance exchanges. A number of the taxes used to help offset the cost of the health law would also have been repealed.
Employment: Department of Labor and Ohio reach Landmark Settlement Ordering Fair Pay in Sheltered Workshops
In a precedent-setting opinion issued by an administrative law judge from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), three workers have been awarded minimum wage going forward and back pay from Seneca Re-Ad, a sheltered workshop run by the Seneca County Board of Developmental Disabilities. Joe Magers, Pam Steward, and Mark Felton had been paid an average of $2.50 an hour for more than three years and are among the first workers with disabilities ever to invoke the petition process to seek a review of their wages by the US DOL. The administrative law judge found that Seneca Re-Ad has not proven that the petitioners’ disabilities keep them from accomplishing the work. Further, the decision holds that their wages have not been calculated correctly. Therefore, Seneca must pay at least the minimum wage.
Employment: Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities Meets
The Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities (WIOA advisory committee) held its quarterly meeting via webinar on January 27-28, 2016. The agenda for the meeting included reports from all of the standing committees as well as further discussion of the use and oversight of the Section 14(c) certificates and reforms to the Ability One program. The meeting also included public testimony from stakeholders. The final report of this committee will be due to Congress in September of 2016.
Health Care: National Council on Disability Releases Affordable Care Act (ACA) Report
On February 2, the National Council on Disability (NCD) released, “Monitoring and Enforcing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for People with Disabilities”. This is the final report in a three-part series on ACA and describes key legal protections in the ACA. NCD is an independent federal agency that makes policy recommendations to Congress and the Administration.
The Arc of the United States Seeks Nominations for our Board of Directors
The Board Development Committee (BDC) of The Arc of the United States is conducting outreach to find potential nominees for the Board of Directors. After carefully considering The Arc’s leadership needs, the BDC developed 2016 Nominating Priorities, which are outlined in the 2016 Board Prospectus. Of particular interest during this nominating cycle is the BDC’s emphasis on The Arc’s continuing efforts to achieve greater diversity on our national board in terms of race or ethnicity. We ask your help in identifying people you know that would be a good fit for The Arc’s Board of Directors.
How do you share your ideas for nominees? You may nominate someone you know for a board member position by filling out the application for the Board of Directors online. If you prefer, there is also an application at the end of the Board Prospectus that you can fill out and send in via regular mail. Or you may share the Prospectus with the individual(s) you have in mind and suggest they consider nominating themselves. Questions? Contact CT Turner, Operations Support Manager, The Arc at email@example.com..
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423