The Arc of Illinois
June 11, 2013
Phil Milsk,
Governmental Affairs Consultant


HB 206(FY 2013 Supplemental)
Supplemental appropriations bill for DHS, DHFS, Aging, Court of Claims and other agencies, including $220 million for DD services.   Sponsors:  House: Madigan   Senate:  Cullerton.  Status: Signed into law on 6/5/13, Public Act 98-17.

HB 213(FY 2014 Appropriations for Human Services Agencies)
Makes FY 2014 appropriations for Department on Aging, DCFS, IL Council on Developmental Disabilities, Deaf and Hard of Hearing Commission, Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, Healthcare and Family Services, Human Rights Commission, Department of Human Rights, DHS,  Public Health, and Veterans’ Affairs. Includes 1% cut in most grant lines with some lines held harmless, and cuts in operations. Sponsors: House:  Madigan  Senate: Cullerton.
Status: Sent to the Governor on 6/4/13.


SB 26 (Medicaid Expansion Opt-In/SMHRFs/SMART Act Fixes)
This is a 596 page bill that covers various Medicaid and related matters. First, it opts Illinois into the Affordable Care Act’s expansion of Medicaid to cover individuals aged 19-64 who are not otherwise eligible under the current Medicaid program who have incomes at or below 133% of the federal poverty level, plus a 5% income disregard as determined by federal rule (so, essentially, at or below 138% of FPL).   The June, 2012, US Supreme Court decision in NFIB v. Sebellius made this an “opt-in” instead of a federal mandate.  This will allow low-income childless adults to qualify for the “new Medicaid” at 100% federal match for the first 3 years.   The health benefits package will be different than traditional Medicaid.  The number of eligible individuals has been estimated to be between 350,000 and 700,000.   Many of these individuals have undiagnosed disabilities and mental illness.

Another part of the bill contains some moderate fixes to the SMART Act enacted in 2012 which made significant cuts in Medicaid and other health benefits.  These include the following:

·       Eliminates the eligibility income cap of 500% FPL for the medically fragile and technology dependent children program.
·       Regarding payment for bed reserves, provides that bed reserve payments to ICFDDs are ceased for purposes of inpatient hospitalizations, except for residents under age 21. (See p. 491)
·       For adult dental care, defines “emergencies” as (1) dental services necessary for an individual in order to clear the individual for a medical procedure such as a transplant, (2) extractions and dentures necessary for a diabetic to receive proper nutrition, (3) extractions and dentures necessary as a result of cancer treatment, (4) dental services necessary for the health of a pregnant woman prior to the delivery of her baby.
·       Limits the prior approval for wheelchair repairs to those costing more than $400 and requires prior approval requests to be adjudicated within one business day of receipt of complete supporting documentation, but prohibits breaking repair estimates into separate claims for purposes of staying under the $400 threshold.
·       Makes equipment in addition to power wheelchairs subject to the “all discounts” rule for cost allowance, such as manual wheelchairs, DME and supplies, and complex rehabilitation technology products and services.
·       Removes the prior approval requirement for anticonvulsant medications prescribed for individuals with epilepsy or seizure disorder.

The bill also authorizes the licensure of Specialized Mental Health Rehabilitation Facilities or SMHRFs.  These are IMDs that were the subject of the Willams consent decree who want to re-invent themselves to provide Medicaid matchable crisis, transition and rehabilitation services to persons with serious mental illness.  The late session inclusion of these facilities in the Medicaid bill split the advocacy community support for the bill as many mental health advocacy groups pulled off the bill.  The majority of the bill’s language deals with SMHRFs, and it is our understanding that $60 million has been committed to SMHRFs in FY 2014 out of HFS’ medicaid budget.   It should be noted that IMDs have a $97 million line in the HFS budget, too.
Sponsors:  Senate:  Steans    House:  Feigenholtz    Status: Passed both houses 5/28/13.


HB 948(Transfer of Domestic Abuse and Neglect Reporting and Investigation to Department on Aging)
Contains the following elements:

·       Creates a committee led by the Department on Aging to study the use of a centralized hotline.
·       Makes Department on Aging the sole State agency to receive and disburse State and federal funds for providing adult protective services in a domestic living situation.
·       Removes DHS/OIG from this process
·        Creats a new Adult Protective Services Act to include adults with disabilities ages 18-59 living in domestic situations.  Does not include CILA or licensed community residential alternative.
·       Makes employee of a DD services provider a mandated reporter of abuse, neglect or financial exploitation.
·       Area agencies on aging will be the “provider agencies” under the bill.
Arc needs to carefully review this legislation and meet with Department on Aging to collaborate on implementation.   Sponsors:  House:  G. Harris   Senate:  Haine
Status: Passed both houses on 5/31/13


HB 2591(Employment First)
Arc bill that creates the Illinois Employment First Act. Provides that the policy of the State is that competitive and integrated employment be considered the first option when serving persons with disabilities of working age. Requires that all State agencies follow this policy and ensure that it is effectively implemented.   The term “state agency” is broadly defined.
Requires all state agencies to collaborate to ensure compliance.  Makes the Employment and Economic Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities Task Force responsible for developing measurable goals and objectives for the State to ensure implementation of the Act and to monitor progress.  Provides that the Task Force shall include a progress report on implementation of the Act in its annual report.   Effective upon becoming law.
Sponsors:  House: Golar  Senate: Biss   Status:  Passed both houses on 5/14/13.


HR 273(Meier)
House Resolution urging the Governor not to close the Murray Developmental Center and not to transfer individuals out  of Murray until DHS completes a study of the transition of individuals out of the Jacksonville Developmental Center.   The resolution was adopted by the House on May 31, 2013.


HB 1017(Mental Health Confidentiality)
Initiative of the Governor’s Office of Health Information Technology.   Broadens the authority of providers of medical care and behavioral  healthcare services to disclosure behavioral health patient information within health information exchanges (HIEs) without patient consent.  Gives patients the right to opt out of disclosure.  This bill has passed both houses of the General Assembly. Sponsors: House: Feigenholtz   Senate: Steans.


SB 1550 (Transition Plans/Independent Living Goals)
Arc bill that amends the School Code to require (rather than to allow, as appropriate) each student with a transition plan to have at least one goal regarding independent living skills.  Transition goals must be assessment based and tailored to the unique needs of the student. Effective upon becoming law.
Sponsors:  Senate: Radogno   House: Sandack   Status:  Passed both houses on 5/28/13.

HB 1288 (Special Education/Procedural Safeguards)
This bill amends the School Code in regard to students with disabilities by: (1) Allowing a parent to invoke the stay-put placement rule by requesting mediation (currently limited to the filing of a due process hearing request); (2) Requiring that the responding  party to a State Complaint filed with the State Board of Education by a parent provide the parent with the response and supporting documentation (currently a parent must file a FOIA request with the State Board of Education to obtain these documents), and (3) Removes obsolete provisions from the Code providing for a stay of a due process hearing officer’s order if a civil action is filed within 30 days of the date of the order.  Effective upon becoming law.
Sponsors:  House:  Gabel   Senate:  Kotowski   Status: Passed both houses on 5/28/13.

HB 1446 (Special Education/IEP Implementation Timeline)
Corrects an inconsistency between IDEA, the School Code and State Board of Education rules by providing that a child’s new or revised IEP must be implemented within 10 school attendance days of the date the parent is sent written notice of the IEP or IEP changes. Effective upon becoming law.
Sponsors:  House:  Willis   Senate:  Cunningham.   Status:  Passed both houses on 5/16/13.


SB 626 (Aligns Act with Federal Regulations)
This is DHS’ bill to ensure that Illinois’ EI Act is aligned with the most recent Federal regulations amendments so that Illinois’ $17 million in federal funding is not in jeopardy.  Effective immediately.  Sponsors:  Senate: Hunter   House: Feigenholtz.    Status:  Passed both houses on 5/30/13.


HB 183(Concealed Carry Licensure)
This legislation is an attempt to comply with a directive from the federal 7th Circuit Court of Appeals by a June 9th deadline that Illinois pass a concealed carry law.  The bill outlines licensure and training requirements and also provides that certain locations and facilities where concealed carry is prohibited. Sponsors:  House: Phelps   Senate: Forby
Status:  Sent to the Governor on June 5, 2013.  NOTE:  The Illinois Attorney General has petitioned the Court for an extension of the June 9 deadline.

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)