Capitol Insider

Major Events Last Week

Medicaid – HCBS Settings Rule

Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) provided updated portions
of the CMCS Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Toolkit: the HCBS Basic
Element Review Tool for Statewide Transition Plans and the HCBS Content Review Tool for
Statewide Transition Plans.
The full HCBS toolkit, including the updated portions, is available

Employment – New TechHire Initiative

Last week, President Obama announced the New TechHire Initiative, which provides $100
million i n grants toward paths to employment of Americans in technology jobs. Included in
the Initiative is a $100 million grant competition by the Department of Labor to support
“innovative approaches to training and successfully employing low-skill individuals with
barriers to training and employment” including people with disabilities.  For more information
visit the New TechHire Initiative webpage.

ABLE Act – IRS Publishes Notices to States Providing Some Guidance to States

On March 10, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced Notice 2015-18 to provide
advance notification of a provision it expects to be included in the proposed regulations for
section 529A of the Internal Revenue Code regarding ABLE Act accounts.

The notice makes two important points:

  • First, the “Treasury Department and the IRS do not want the lack of guidance to
    discourage states from enacting their enabling legislation and creating their ABLE
    programs, which could delay the ability of the families of disabled individuals or others
    to begin to fund ABLE accounts for those disabled individuals. Therefore, the Treasury
    Department and the IRS are assuring states that enact legislation creating an ABLE
    program in accordance with section 529A, and those individuals establishing ABLE
    accounts in accordance with such legislation, that they will not fail to receive the
    benefits of section 529A merely because the legislation or the account documents do
    not fully comport with the guidance when it is issued. The Treasury Department and
    the IRS intend to provide transition relief with regard to necessary changes to ensure
    that t he state programs and accounts meet the requirements in the guidance,
    including providing sufficient time after issuance of the guidance in order for changes
    to be implemented.”
  • Second, the Treasury Department and the IRS advise the states that the ABLE Act
    guidance, when issued, may differ in various ways from the current section 529
    education programs.  “In particular, the Treasury Department and the IRS currently
    anticipate that, consistent with section 529A(e)(3), the guidance will provide that the
    owner of an ABLE account is the designated beneficiary of the account.  In addition,
    the Treasury Department and the IRS currently anticipate that the section 529A
    guidance will provide that, with regard to the ABLE account of a designated beneficiary
    who is not the person with signature authority over that account, the person with
    signature authority over the account of the designated beneficiary may neither have
    nor acquire any beneficial interest in the account and must administer that account for
    the benefit of the designated beneficiary of that account.”These are both important
    clarifications for states moving forward with legislation.  The IRS notice can be found



Disability Policy Seminar – Early Bird Registration Extended, 2 Days Left!

Early Bird Registration for the Disability Policy Seminar has been extended through
Wednesday, March 18, EDT.  Register now to get the best rates!  There are many critical
issues on the table affecting people with disabilities in the 114th Congress and your voices
need to be heard.  The Disability Policy Seminar will take place April 13-15, 2015 at the
Renaissance Downtown Hotel in Washington, D.C.  Cherry Blossoms are expected to be at
their peak!  Register now!

Disability Policy Seminar – Webinar

If you are planning on attending the Disability Policy Seminar for the first time, you should
register for the Association of University Centers on Disabilities’ (AUCD) webinar, “Know
Before You Go: Preparing for the Disability Policy Seminar 2015.”
  Presented by AUCD’s
Director of Public Policy Kim Musheno, this hosting organization’s webinar offers an
orientation to the policy issues and current legislation one can expect to learn more about
at the Policy Seminar.  The webinar covers the basics of how to make an appointment to
meet with Congressional representatives, how to deliver a unified message about federally
funded programs that benefit people with disabilities, as well as provide tips on preparing
for and making hill visits.

The ABLE National Resource Center Presents a FREE Webinar: Understanding ABLE

In collaboration with The Arc, National Disability Institute, Autism Speaks, National Down
Syndrome Society, and the College Plan Savings Network, The ABLE National Resource
Center will host a webinar titled “Understanding ABLE” on Thursday, March 26, 2015 at
2 PM EDT.  The event will cover ABLE Act core components, as well as the status of
implementation at both the federal and state levels.  Marty Ford, Senior Executive Officer for
Public Policy, The Arc is one of the featured speakers. Registration for this important event is
now open and will be taken on a first come, first serve basis,  Should you wish to join us,
please sign up here.

Please note: Real time captioning will be provided for this webinar. For other
accommodation requests, questions about the webinar, or the registration process,
please contact James Thayer.

Tony Paulauski
Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423
815-464-1832 (OFFICE)
815-464-1832 (CELL)

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