Legislative Update: Last week's hearing, national news, and Day at the Capitol 2024!

By Jonathan Tvedt posted 03-18-2024 09:30


Another week, another hearing for one of ARRM’s bills! As we move closer to the first and second committee deadline next Friday, March 22nd ARRM staff continue to work with Legislative staff behind the scenes to ensure that our priorities are still in consideration. This coming week we have an additional hearing in the Senate for our City Licensing bill and the Human Service Omnibus Policy bills will be released. We will have a full rundown of everything included in those bills next week. Keep reading for a recap of our hearing, news coming out of the White House on disability services, and our biggest event of the year!

Recap of House Hearing:

·       ARRM’s bill, H.F. 3939, a proposal for a time-limited licensing moratorium exception that would allow 5- or 6-person Skilled Living Facilities (SLF) to convert to a Community Residential Setting (CRS) was heard in the Human Service Finance Committee on Tuesday. This was the bill’s second hearing in the House after previously being brought to the House Human Services Policy Committee. ARRM Staff, Ken Bence provided testimony to the Rep. Curran sponsored bill. Legislators had questions about adjusting capacity for the impacted homes, of which there are 14 in the state. The bill was laid over for consideration following the hearing.

National News:

With the release of President Biden’s fiscal year 2025 budget proposals, a proposed 10-year investment for Medicaid-funded home and community-based services (HCBS) was put forward. The 10-year investment calls for $150 billion to the Medicaid-funded homes and services, with the understanding of the current capacity limitations experienced nation-wide. The budget proposal also saw an additional $130 billion allocated for Health and Human Services – providing a $2.2 billion increase from the previous year’s budget. It should be noted that at this time these are just proposals. Further revisions to the budget will be made going forward, before we get a final number going toward HCBS and HHS.

Day at the Capitol 2024

The day is finally here! Disability Day at the Capitol is this Tuesday, March 19th! We look forward to seeing all of you at our rally which kicks off in the capitol building rotunda at 10 AM. The rally will start with words from ARRM CEO, Sue Schettle before we hand the mic off to Governor Tim Walz. A speaking line-up of other disability champions at the House and Senate will follow until 11 AM. At that time, constituents will have the opportunity to meet with their representatives in both the House and Senate, which ARRM has scheduled meetings for at each representatives’ office. These meetings are time for you to discuss the issues facing disabled communities across the state. While we encourage you to talk about any of ARRM’s 9 bills this session, raising awareness of the issues with our state reps is an important step in gathering support for current and future initiatives.

A livestream of the event will also be available for those who cannot attend in person. The livestream will be available on ARRM’s youtube page. While construction outside of the capitol has created some barriers to parking, there are still plenty of open lots around the capitol grounds. A map of the open parking lots can be found here. Lot D will be closed due to the construction. In addition, please make sure any signs brought into the building are not held up with a stick or pole. Standalone signs with no further attachments can be brought into the rotunda.

We look forward to seeing you for the big rally, and please stop by any ARRM staff to get some free ARRM swag! This year we will be handing out ARRM mittens! Don’t miss out on yours!

Thanks for all you do and please reach out with any questions.

--Johnny Tvedt, Policy and Engagement Manager