The following Arc of Illinois programs: Illinois Life Span, Family Support Network and Family Transition Project will be closing on August 31st, 2017 pending receipt of funding from the State of Illinois. We hope that this will be a temporary pause in these important information and resource services. Please direct any inquiries in the meantime to The Arc of Illinois at 815-464-1832. Thank you!
Today is the Day! Currently in the House, debate is going on about the latest bill and a vote is scheduled for 3:30 pm. It isn’t too late to call your legislators. Twenty Illinoisans were in DC this week at the Disability Policy Seminar and on the Hill advocating. Let’s stop this in the House. Thanks to all those who have already made calls. Here is what is in this week’s updates:
AHCA Vote Today
Advocacy in DC
Supreme Court Speaks to Access to Special Education
State Policy and Advocacy
Resources & Upcoming Events
AHCA Vote 3:30 pm… Maybe?!
Having pulled the bill yesterday because they did not have the votes, the House Republicans are currently planning to hold a vote today around 3:30 pm as of right now. Currently there is debate going on. In order to bring more conservative Republicans along, there are three new amendments:
Repeal Essential Health Benefits (EHB)
Add $15 billion to the stabilization fund, which is being claimed as funding for mental health, despite the fact that repealing EHB will undermine mental health and substance use coverage
Delay repeal of the Medicare high income tax by 6 years (presumably to pay for the repeal of EHB)
Call, Tweets, Emails Now!
Time is now to call, tweet and email the following Illinois delegation members. You can email each of them through their websites (www.lastnameoftherep.house.gov):
Peter Roskam @PeterRoskam 202-225-4561
Mike Bost @RepBost 202-225-5661
Rodney Davis @RodneyDavis 202-225-2371
Randy Hultgren @RepHultgren 202-225-2976
John Shimkus @RepShimkus 202-225-5271
Adam Kinzinger @RepKinzinger 202-225-3635
Darin LaHood @RepLaHood 202-225-6201
Popular Twitter hashtags are: #savemedicaid #protectourcare #ILSaveACA #medicaidmatters.
Illinois Advocates in DC This Week
Twenty Illinois Advocates spent most of the week in DC speaking to legislators in the House and Senate about issues impacting people with disabilities. The groups held almost 20 meetings with policy makers and staff and tried to echo the advocacy work being done in Illinois! Thanks advocates for taking the time!
From Education Week, 03.22.17
The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a major decision expanding the scope of students’ special education rights, ruling unanimously that schools must do more than provide a “merely more than de minimis” education program to a student with a disability. In Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District, the high court rejected the “merely more than de minimis” standard set by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit, in Denver. That language was also used in an opinion in another special education case by Judge Neil M. Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court.
Illinois’ Unpaid Bills Reach $12.8B
Last Friday according to the Comptroller, Illinois’ unpaid bills reached $12.8 billion or roughly $1,000 per state resident. Illinois is the lowest rated state with a triple-B credit rating, but it could drop lower to the never before achieved “junk bond rating” if it begins FY2018 without a budget. One analyst says that Illinois is nearing “service-level insolvency” meaning that the state would not be able to carry out its basic functions. It means that we must pass a budget now! More at Reuters, and Capitol Fax.