The Annapolis Insider
Weekly Legislative Update 
 Week of March 27 - 31, 2017

Greetings from The Arc Maryland Policy Team! Throughout the 2017 Session of the Maryland General Assembly, we bring you weekly recaps and updates every Friday on key legislation and events. The Legislative Session runs from January 11 - April 10 midnight 2017. 
This Week's Highlights 
50 People on Crisis Prevention Waiting List to get services; FY 2018 Budget Adopted by Conference Committee; HOME Act brings promise; Emergency Evacuation Hearing Held.

The Arc analyzes bills relevant to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), develops and presents testimony, organizes witnesses, and works with coalitions on our priority issues.

Events and Hearings Held This Week on Key Issues

50 People on Crisis Prevention List to get Services in Current Fiscal Year 2017

For the first time in many years, DDA funds will reach people on the Crisis Prevention Category of the Waiting List during the current fiscal year (FY 2017). Previously, funds have only been available for emergencies and the most urgent waiting list category - Crisis Resolution. DDA projects reversion of $17M at the end of this fiscal year. The Arc is pleased funds will used to help more people on the 8,000 long Waiting List.

FY 2018 Maryland State Budget Adopted

Great News! The FY 2018 state budget has passed the legislature. All expansion for the Autism Waiver and the Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) are in the budget as well as the full 3.5% DDA Rate Increase. Congratulations to everyone who worked so hard to result in tremendous success!

Budget language was adopted that includes authorization for DDA to use any unspent funds for capped waivers to go to the Waiting List; a report from DDA on direct support wages; and a report from the Office of Health Care Quality on recruitment of nurse surveyors. Unfortunately, language that was in the Senate budget bill to address the transition from Community Supported Living Arrangements to Personal Supports was not adopted. Click here to read more.

 
Medicaid  - Stay Alert!  

Thank you to everyone for your intense advocacy last week as you contacted members of Congress. While the American Health Care Act (AHCA) was pulled from a vote last week, the White House and GOP continue to work on other alternatives to cut Medicaid, specifically caps and block grants. These proposals may come piecemeal. Advocates are encouraged to be alert and continue to gather stories of real people that could be impacted. Click here for Maryland Medicaid Fact Sheet. You can send your story to   info@thearcmd.org. Be sure to complete the release of information form here .

You can keep up to date on proposed Congressional action. Go to www.thearc.org for ongoing information and action you can take. Click here  to find your U.S. Senators and Congress people.

Emergency Evacuation Hearing Held  
L-R Susan Somerville-Hawes, Lori, Cassidy & Charlie Scott, and Delegate Alonzo Washington

HB 1061 - Education - Emergency and Evacuation Plans - Individuals with Disabilities has passed the full House and was heard this week before the Senate EHEA Committee. HB 1061 is aimed toward the safe evacuation of students, personnel and visitors with disabilities in emergencies such as weather, shooter in the building and other potential emergencies requiring evacuation. The bill will require the state Department of Education to review local education plans and work with disability advocates to determine best practice guidelines. By July 1, 2018, each local school system must update its emergency plan to comply with the updated guidelines and regulations.  If a student with an individualized education program (IEP) requires specific accommodations for evacuation in an emergency, the student's IEP must include the necessary accommodation.  If a student with a 504 plan requires specific accommodations, the student's 504 team must discuss and address the student's needs as necessary.  Click here to read an article written by Lori Scott, the mother behind the emergency evacuation bill. 

Home Act of 2017 will allow Maryland to End Housing Discrimination
 
The Home Act of 2017 (HB 172/SB 728) will prohibit  discriminatory practices in residential sales or rentals because of a person's source of income.  The Act would end a discriminatory practice that affects many Americans, particularly people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) who rely upon Section 8 subsidies. 
 
Multiple federal laws prohibit discrimination against people with disabilities; however people with disabilities comprise the majority of discrimination complaints received by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Fair Housing Enforcement Office.
 
Too often, it is the source of income that a person with a disability uses to pay for housing that makes them a target of discrimination. One housing resource that is beneficial to people with I/DD (but also a source of discrimination) is The Housing Choice Voucher Program.
 
The Housing Voucher Program (Section 8) is a federally-funded, locally administered rental assistance program that subsidizes rent for people with I/DD and others who qualify.  Further, nearly 5 million Americans with disabilities receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which averages a yearly income of only $8,995. People receiving SSI are priced out of every rental housing market in the nation.  The Housing Voucher program, when complemented by Medicaid, SSI and food assistance resources, is a lifeline so people with disabilities can afford housing. 
 
The Home Act of 2017 would prohibit refusal to accept Section 8 as a source of income when determining if a person can buy or rent property.  HB 172 has passed the House; SB 728 is currently in the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee. The Arc Maryland submitted testimony in favor of this important disability rights legislation.     

SB 872/HB 971 - The James W. Hubbard Inclusive Higher Education Grant Program

Both bills have passed their respective houses and crossed over to the other side. The bill offers competitive grants to state universities and colleges to develop and implement pilot programs on Maryland campuses that provide inclusive higher education opportunities for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). 
 
LEGISLATION 

Bill Number
Bill Title
Status
Committee
The Arc 
MD's 
Position
The Arc MD Testified
( SB 230)
Labor and Employment - Maryland Healthy Working Families Act
Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
ECM, FIN
Support with Amendments
Environment - Children With Elevated Blood Lead Levels - Environmental Investigation
Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
E&T, EHEA
Support
Estates and Trusts - Conditions of Disability and Incapacity - Confinement
Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
Support
Health Insurance - Required Conformity With Federal Law
Passed in House, Hearing 4/4 at 1 pm (FIN)
Monitor

Department of Health and Mental Hygiene - Board of Review - Repeal Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
HGO, FIN
Oppose
State Disabilities Plan and Interagency Disabilities Board - Revisions
Passed in House, Second Reading Passed in House
Monitor

Environment - Reduction of Lead Risk in Housing - Notification of Elevated Blood Lead Level
Passed in House, Post Hearing
Support
HB 150
(SB 170)
Budget Bill Passed Enrolled APP Support
HB 152
(SB 172)
Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act of 2017 Passed Enrolled APP Support with Amendments
HB 172
(SB 728)
Home Act of 2017 Passed in House, First Reading in Senate E&T, JPR Support
Education - Children With Disabilities - Individualized Education Program Process - Parental Consent
Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
W&M, EHEA
Support
Baltimore County - Public Schools - Active Assailant Event Training and Drills
Post Hearing
W&M
Support with Amendments
( SB 485)
Education - Remote Classroom Technology Grant Program - Establishment (Peyton's Bill)
Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
Support
( SB 272)
Guardianship and Child in Need of Assistance Proceedings - Jurisdiction and Authority of Juvenile Court
Passed in House, Second Reading Passed in Senate
JUD, JPR
Support
( SB 786)
Education - Behavior Intervention Plans - Physical Restraint and Seclusion
Post Hearing
W&M
Support
( SB 1106)
Health Care Practitioners - Use of Teletherapy
Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
HGO, EHEA
Monitor

( SB 305)
Commonsense Paid Leave Act
Post Hearing
ECM
Monitor

( SB 651)
Public Schools - Suspensions and Expulsions
Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
Support
( SB 344)
Maryland Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Program - Account Clarifications
Passed in House, Returned Passed by Senate
HGO, B&T
Support
( SB 943)
Family Child Care Homes and Child Care Centers - Dispute Resolution Process - Regulations
Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
W&M, EHEA
Support
( SB 604)
Visual Impairments - Requirements for Teacher Training, Student Screening, and Maryland Medical Assistance Program Coverage
Post Hearing
W&M, HGO
Monitor

( SB 562)
Health Care Decisions Act - Advance Directives and Surrogate Decision Making - Disqualified Individuals
Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
Support
 
( SB 581)
Workgroup to Study the Implementation of Universal Access to Prekindergarten for 4-Year-Olds
Passed in House, Returned Passed by Senate
Monitor
Public Health - Prenatal Infectious Disease Testing
Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
Monitor

( SB 420 )
Humane Adoption of Companion Animals Used in Research Act of 2017
Post Hearing
APP
Monitor

( SB 667)
Education - Prekindergarten Student Assessment - Moratorium
Post Hearing
W&M
Monitor

HB 571
(SB 282)
Property Tax Credit - Disabled or Fallen Law Enforcement Officers and Rescue Workers - Acquisition of Dwelling
Post Hearing W&M Support
Behavioral Health Community Providers - Keep the Door Open Act
Post Hearing
HGO
Monitor

HB 631
(SB 415)
Public Health - Essential Generic Drugs - Price Gouging - Prohibition
Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate
HGO, ECM, FIN
Support
( SB 180)
Independent Living Tax Credit Act
Passed in House, Second Reading Passed in Senate
Support
( SB 570)
Maryland Medical Assistance Program - Telehealth - Requirements
Post Hearing
HGO
Monitor

( SB 607)
Labor and Employment - Exemptions From Overtime Pay - Administrative, Executive, or Professional Capacity
Post Hearing
ECM
Monitor

( SB 437)
Public Health - Expensive Drugs - Manufacturer Reporting and Drug Price Transparency Advisory Committee
Post Hearing
HGO
Monitor

( SB 813)
Department of Housing and Community Development - Rental Assistance Programs - Duration of Assistance
Post Hearing
E&T
Monitor

 HB 696
(SB 849)
Department of Housing and Community Development - Rental Assistance Programs - Duration of Assistance
Post Hearing W&M Support
Education - PARCC Testing - Children With Disabilities (Ben's Rule)
Post Hearing W&M
Oppose
HB 736 Workgroup to Recommend Possible Reforms to Maryland's Health Care System
Post Hearing HGO Monitor
HB 769
(SB 216)
Maryland Caregivers Support Coordinating Council - Renaming and Altering Membership and Duties
Passed in House, Second Reading Passed in Senate HGO, FIN Monitor
HB 909
(SB 571)
Maryland Health Insurance Coverage Protection Act Passed in House, First Reading in Senate HGO, FIN Monitor
HB 971
(SB 872)
James W. Hubbard Inclusive Higher Education Grant Program Passed in House, First Reading in Senate W&M, EHEA Support
HB 978
(SB 871)
Education - Accountability - Consolidated State Plan and Support and Improvement Plans (Protect Our Schools Act of 2017) Passed in House, Passed Enrolled by Senate W&M, EHEA Support
HB 1061 Task Force to Study Emergency and Evacuation Plans for Students, Staff, and Visitors with Disabilities in Public School Facilities Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate W&M, EHEA Support
( SB 201)
Education - Fire Drill Requirements - State Fire Prevention Code
Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
W&M, EHEA
Support with Amendments
HB 1080 Education - Universal Prekindergarten - Established Post Hearing W&M Monitor
HB 1158 Maryland Medical Assistance Program - Comprehensive Dental Benefits for Adults - Authorization
Post Hearing HGO Support
HB 1165 Estate - Duties of Guardian of the Person - Notice and Visitation by Family Passed in House, First Reading in Senate HGO, JPR Monitor
HB 1175
(SB 834)
Human Relations - Discrimination by a Place of Public Accommodation - Enforcement and Remedies
Post Hearing HGO Support
HB 1207
(SB 85)
Family Law - Treatment Foster Care Homes - Siblings Passed in House, First Reading in Senate JUD, JPR Monitor
HB 1214
(SB 1013)
Health Occupations - Dental Therapists - Licensure Post Hearing HGO Support
HB 1222 Maryland School Discipline Reform Act Post Hearing W&M Support
( SB 340)
University of Maryland School of Public Health, Center for Health Equity - Workgroup on Health in All Policies Passed in House, First Reading in Senate
HGO, FIN, EHEA
Monitor

HB 1268 Education - Student Achievement Gap Standard - Establishment (Maryland Student Achievement Act) Post Hearing W&M Support
HB 1287 Commission on the School-to-Prison Pipeline and Restorative Practices Passed in House, Post Hearing in Senate W&M, EHEA Support
( SB 542)
Maryland Lead Poisoning Recovery Act
Post Hearing
E&T, JUD
Support
( SB 962)
Labor and Employment - Payment of Minimum Wage Required (Fight for Fifteen)
Post Hearing
ECM
Monitor

HB 1559
(SB 173)
Commission on Access to Tax-Preferred Health and Childcare Savings Accounts for All Marylanders
First Reading HRU Monitor
HB 1613
(SB 876)
Individuals With Disabilities - Establishing Community-Based Long-Term Services and Supports (Maryland Disability Integration Act)
First Reading HRU Monitor
HB 1625 Environmental - Reduction of Lead Risk in Housing - Blood Lead Level First Reading HRU Monitor
( SJ 2)
Constitutional Convention - Amendment - Repeal
Post Hearing
HRU
Support
Education - Specialized Intervention Services - Reports
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Support
Reporting Abuse to the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program and the Office of Health Care Quality
Passed in Senate, Favorable with Amendments Report in House
Monitor

( HB 1207)
Family Law - Treatment Foster Care Homes - Siblings
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Monitor
SB 170
(HB 150)
Budget Bill (Fiscal Year 2018) First Reading B&T Support
SB 172
(HB 152)
Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act of 2017 Post Hearing B&T Support with Amendments
( HB 1559)
Commission on Access to Tax-Preferred Health and Childcare Savings Accounts for All Marylanders
Post Hearing
B&T
Monitor

( HB 644)
Independent Living Tax Credit Act
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Support
( HB 1066)
Education - Fire Drill Requirements - State Fire Prevention Code
Passed in Senate, Second Reading Passed in House
Support with Amendments
( HB 769)
Maryland Caregivers Support Coordinating Council - Renaming and Altering Membership and Duties
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Monitor

( HB 1)
Labor and Employment - Maryland Healthy Working Families Act
Passed in Senate, First Reading in House
Support with Amendments
Task Force to Study Suspension Rates of African American Prekindergarten Students
Post Hearing
Support with Amendments
( HB 279)
Guardianship and Child in Need of Assistance Proceedings - Jurisdiction and Authority of Juvenile Court
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Support
SB 282
(HB 571)
Property Tax Credit - Disabled or Fallen Law Enforcement Officers and Rescue Workers - Acquisition of Dwelling
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House B&T, W&M Support
( HB 382)
Commonsense Paid Leave Act
Post Hearing
Monitor

( HB 1225)
University of Maryland School of Public Health, Center for Health Equity - Workgroup on Health in All Policies
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Monitor

( HB 448)
Maryland Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Program - Account Clarifications
Passed in Senate, Returned Passed by House
Support
Education - Prekindergarten Students - Funding
Post Hearing
B&T
Monitor

( HB 631)
Public Health - Essential Generic Drugs - Price Gouging - Prohibition
Post Hearing
FIN
Support
( HB 528)
Humane Adoption of Companion Animals Used in Research Act of 2017
Post Hearing
Monitor

( HB 666)
Public Health - Expensive Drugs - Manufacturer Reporting and Drug Price Transparency Advisory Committee
Post Hearing
FIN
Monitor

( HB 1140)
State Procurement - Information Technology - Nonvisual Access
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
EHEA, HGO
Monitor

( HB 984)
Developmental Disabilities Administration - Crisis Resolution and Crisis Prevention Services - Funding and Reporting
Post Hearing
FIN
Support
( HB 580)
Behavioral Health Community Providers - Keep the Door Open Act
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
Monitor

Education - Remote Classroom Technology Grant Program - Establishment (Peyton's Bill)
Passed in Senate, Second Reading Passed in House
Support
( HB 1358)
Maryland Lead Poisoning Recovery Act
Post Hearing
JPR Support
Education - Maryland Education Opportunity Account Program - Established
Post Hearing
B&T
Oppose
( HB 498)
Health Care Decision Act - Advance Directives and Surrogate Decision Making - Disqualified Individuals
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
FIN, HGO
Support
( HB 658)
Maryland Medical Assistance Program - Telehealth - Requirements
Post Hearing
FIN
Monitor

( HB 909)
Maryland Health Insurance Coverage Protection Act
Passed in Senate, Passed Enrolled by House
FIN, HGO
Monitor

( HB 516)
Workgroup to Study the Implementation of Universal Access to Prekindergarten for 4-Year-Olds
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
B&T, W&M
Monitor
Baltimore City and Baltimore County - Police Behavioral Health Units - Training Requirements
Post Hearing
JPR
Monitor

( HB 458)
Visual Impairments - Requirements for Teacher Training, Student Screening, and Maryland Medical Assistance Program Coverage
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
EHEA, FIN, W&M, HGO
Monitor

( HB 425)
Public Schools - Suspension and Expulsions
Passed in Senate, First Reading in House
EHEA, HRU
Support
( HB 548)
Education - Prekindergarten Student Assessment - Moratorium
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
EHEA, W&M
Monitor

State Budget
Post Hearing
B&T
Monitor

Education - Children With Disabilities - Individualized Education Program Process- Parental Consent
Passed in Senate, First Reading in House
EHEA, HRU
Support
SB 728
(HB 172)
Home Act of 2017 Post Hearing JPR Support
( HB 331)
Education - Behavior Intervention Plans - Physical Restraint and Seclusion
Passed in Senate, First Reading in House
EHEA, HRU
Support
( HB 689)
Department of Housing and Community Development - Rental Assistance Programs - Duration of Assistance
Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House
EHEA, E&T
Monitor

SB 834
(HB 1175)
Human Relations - Discrimination by a Place of Public Accommodation - Enforcement and Remedies
Post Hearing JPR Support
SB 849
(HB 689)
Nonpublic Elementary and Secondary Schools - Discrimination - Prohibition Post Hearing JPR Support
SB 871
(HB 978)
Education - Accountability - Consolidated State Plan and Support and Improvement Plans (Protect Our Schools Act of 2017)
Passed in Senate, First Reading in House EHEA, HRU Support
SB 872
(HB 971)
James W. Hubbard Inclusive Higher Education Grant Program Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House EHEA, W&M Support
SB 943
(HB 456)
Family Child Care Homes and Child Care Centers - Dispute Resolution Process - Regulations Passed in Senate, Post Hearing in House EHEA, W&M Support
SB 962
(HB 1416)
Labor and Employment - Payment of Minimum Wage Required (Fight for Fifteen) Post Hearing FIN Monitor
SB 1013
(HB 1214)
Health Occupations - Dental Therapists - Licensure Passed in Senate, First Reading in House EHEA, HRU Support
SB 1106
(HB 352)
Healthcare Practitioners - Use of Teletherapy Passed in Senate, First Reading in House SRU, HRU Monitor
SJ 2
(HJ 2)
Constitutional Convention - Amendment - Repeal Passed in Senate, First Reading in House EHEA, HRU Support
SJ 3 United States Constitution - Amendments Convention - Limitations of Federal Power Post Hearing EHEA Monitor
 
Please note: the following abbreviations identify the legislative committees in the Maryland General Assembly.

House of Delegates
  • Appropriations Committee - APP
  • Economic Matters Committee - EMC
  • Environment and Transportation Committee - E&T
  • Health and Government Operations Committee - HGO
  • House Rules and Executive Nominations - HRU
  • Judicial Committee - JUD
  • Ways and Means Committee - W&M
Senate 
  • Budget & Taxation Committee - B&T
  • Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee - EHEA
  • Finance Committee - FIN
  • Judicial Proceedings Committee - JPR
     
The Arc Maryland Policy Team 

Cristine Marchand, Executive Director

Susan Somerville-Hawes , Esq., Director of Public Policy & Advocacy - Children and Families
Jamie Stoner , The Arc Maryland 2017 Public Policy Fellow; Director of Outreach, The Arc Northern Chesapeake Region
Andrew Siske, Legislative Intern, University of Baltimore School of Law
Aaron Stephens , Deputy Director, The Arc of Frederick County