From The Executive Director......

Susan Real

MEMORANDUM

TO:          ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

FROM:    Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:     May 2, 2017

RE:           Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…

  • Late Sunday night (April 30, 2017), Congress announced that they had reached a bipartisan deal to fund the government through the remainder of FY 2017.
  • While Congress must still pass, and the President must sign the bipartisan funding proposal, it is expected that lawmakers will meet the May 5th deadline imposed by last-week’s short-term continuing resolution.
  • Older Americans Act Programs and related services mostly received level funding in the final bill, which is very good news in this challenging budget environment. The following is a summary of specific programs that received increases or reductions:

- $2.5 million increase in Title III-B – Supportive Services

- $1 million increase in Title III C2 – Home Delivered Meals

- $2 million increase in Title III-C1 – Congregate Meals

- $34 million decrease in the Title V Senior Community Services Employment Program (SCSEP) which is a nearly 8% reduction

- $5 million decrease in the Senior Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIPs) which is a 9.6% reduction

  • Older Americans Act Programs and related services that received level funding:

- Title III-E Family Caregiver Support Program

- Title VII Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program

- Prevention and Public Health Fund – CDSMP and Falls Prevention programs

- Senior Corps – RSVP, Foster Grandparents and Senior Companion

- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

- Social Services Block Grant (SSBG)

- Community Services Block Grant (CSBG)

- Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)

  • Advocacy is still needed – the President’s proposed budget for FY 2018 includes deeper cuts in discretionary grants such as the Older Americans Act.
  • Please refer to the attached FY 2017-2018 Labor-HHS Appropriations Chart updated April 30, 2017.

On the State Scene…

Even though we heard promising reports, final efforts failed by the Illinois Senate to bring the bipartisan budget proposal labeled the "Grand Bargain" to a vote. The Illinois House recently passed their version of an emergency budget labeled the "Lifeline Budget." Whether it be the "Grand Bargain" or the "Lifeline Budget", the Illinois General Assembly must resolve the Budget Impasse before they adjourn on May 31, 2017.

Stay tuned for more updates! Thanks to everyone for your continued advocacy efforts on behalf of older adults, caregivers, grandparents/relatives raising grandchildren/children and individuals with disabilities!

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MEMORANDUM

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:        March 14, 2017

RE:             Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…Excerpt from Source: n4A’s Legislative Update-Major Changes Proposed for Health Care and Aging Programs. From n4a’s Legislative Team: Amy Gotwals and Autumn Campbell

Older Americans Act – Continuing Resolution or Omnibus Bill?

The current Continuing Resolution (CR) ends on April 28, 2017. One approach is to pass another CR for the rest of the fiscal year. Another approach is to pass certain individual funding bills and roll them into small omnibus-type bills, knowns as “minibuses.” Either way, it is unlikely that the Older Americans Act will see an increase this year.

House of Representatives release plan replacing the Affordable Care Act with the American Health Care Act.  

The American Health Care Act would have major implications for both seniors age 65 and older and pre-Medicare older adults ages 55 to 64.

The American Health Care Act maintains the following provisions as contained in the Affordable Care Act (ACA):

  1. It leaves in place the prohibition on denying coverage because of pre-existing conditions; and,

  2. Will maintain ACA’s phase-out of the Medicare Part D doughnut hole.

However, the American Health Care Act will have a negative impact on older adults.

  • The replacement plan halts several major funding sources and significantly restructures cost-sharing arrangements.
  • Insurers may charge five times more for a plan they offer to an older adult than the plan they give to a younger person, resulting in higher premiums for people aged 55 to 64. (ACA requires insurers may not charge more than 3 times more to older adults).

  • The replacement plan will result in higher premiums and reduced tax credits for middle and low-income earners – especially seniors.

  • AARP has estimated that under the American Health Care Act, 3.2 million adults age 55 to 64 who buy coverage on the marketplace could face premium and cost-sharing increases of $3,600 a year or more.

  • The replacement plan will affect Medicaid by eliminating the federal-state cost-sharing arrangement to a federal per-capita cap structure.   Advocates are concerned that such a capped system could severely limit a state’s ability to keep up with the rising costs of providing care.

  • The replacement plan reduces and eliminates the Prevention and Public Health Fund completely in 2019. This provision under the Affordable Care Act supports ACL grants for falls prevention programs, and chronic disease self-management programs.

    On the State Scene…

    Community Reinvestment Program (CRP)/ House Bill 3814.

    The Illinois House Aging Committee heard testimony on March 9, 2017 from senior advocates pertaining to the Illinois Department on Aging’s Community Reinvestment Program.

    The committee is chaired by Rep. Anna Moeller (D-Elgin). The Minority Spokesperson is Rep. Terri Bryant (R-Mt. Vernon). In summary, agencies who presented testimony were either opposed or supportive, but all were unified in requesting that CRP be implemented through the legislative process – not the administrative rule process.

     Illinois Budget Impasse for FY 2017.

Both the Illinois House and Senate return today, March 14, 2017. The following bullet points highlight the “Grand Bargain” bi-partisan plan the Senate has been working on for the past two months. The plan calls for both new revenues plus $2.7 billion in cuts.   Contacts have been made to Senators Barickman, Brady, Manar and Rose to thank them for their efforts, and to reinforce the urgency to resolve the budget impasse – 18,000 thousand seniors in east central Illinois are adversely impacted by this budget battle.

We will keep you posted. Thank you everyone for your continued advocacy efforts on behalf of older adults, caregivers, grandparents/relatives raising grandchildren/children and individuals with disabilities in east central Illinois!

SCR:sr

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE: February 28, 2017

RE: Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…Excerpted from Source: n4A’s Legislative Update-Major Changes Proposed for Health Care and Aging Programs. From n4a’s Legislative Team: Amy Gotwals and Autumn Campbell

Congress and the Trump Administration Announce Changes - Policy Details Thin

In the past week, reports have emerged from both Capitol Hill and the White House that indicate the direction Republican policymakers will go in making major changes to both federal health care programs and the federal budget. n4a will continue to provide details, advocacy opportunities and resources as they are available, but for now, we wanted to inform our members as to what appears to be emerging, even if only at a high level.

What Do We Know?

If leaked documents from the House of Representatives and statements from the White House are accurate, lawmakers will soon unveil the first of several steps to repeal the Affordable Care Act and to restructure Medicaid, and the White House will release a proposal to dramatically cut funding for non-defense discretionary (NDD) programs in FY 2018. While these reports are not surprising, they are the first major examples of policy priorities for the Trump Administration and the 115th Congress.

We expect additional details on both proposals will emerge this week now that Members of Congress have returned to DC and President Trump will give his first address to Congress this evening. However, it may still be several weeks or more before we know exactly how these changes could affect Medicaid and funding for Older Americans Act and other critical aging programs.

Changes to Federal Health Care Programs

On Friday, a House draft bill to begin the repeal process for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was leaked. Details of that proposal also reflected the first legislative salvo at restructuring the federal-state health care and LTSS program Medicaid. Republicans in Congress and the Trump Administration have been floating major changes to Medicaid, but advocates and policy analysts were initially anticipating these changes wouldn’t be unveiled until the fall of this year. However, in recent weeks, it’s become clear that the timetable for Medicaid has been moved up.

The proposal that leaked from the House authorizing committees would not only repeal large swaths of the ACA, including the individual coverage mandate and Medicaid expansion, it would also transition the federal Medicaid program into a per-capita cap structure by FY 2019, which would shift the federal contribution to states for Medicaid beneficiaries from a dynamic structure that increases as costs increase to establishing a per-beneficiary spending limit for states. As proposed in the leaked draft, the federal contribution would be tied to current spending, and increased based on the rate of the Medical Consumer Price Index plus 1 percent each year.

n4a and other advocates are still analyzing what a per-capita cap structure for Medicaid would mean for Medicaid providers—especially for traditionally high-cost beneficiaries, including older adults and people with disabilities. We also cannot confirm at this point that lawmakers have abandoned the block grant approach, either. We do know, however, that previous reform proposals have set a goal of reducing federal Medicaid costs up to 40 percent over 10 years. This cost reduction would likely come through a combination of constrained federal spending, increased risk and costs for states, and potential reductions in services available to beneficiaries. For AAAs and other CBOs providing home and community-based services (HCBS) through Medicaid waiver programs—and the clients who rely on HCBS—these changes could be particularly troubling.

Initial Details of Trump Budget

Today, the Trump Administration announced plans to make significant shifts in discretionary spending levels for defense and non-defense programs in the President’s first budget. Again, details are sparse, but what we do know is that the Administration plans to release an FY 2018 budget that breaks long-standing parity between defense and non-defense discretionary spending cuts, and pay for a proposed $54 billion boost to defense programs with a $54 billion cut to NDD programs. Reports indicate that this level of cuts to NDD programs could translate into an overall 10 percent cut. Details of how such a cut would be reflected among individuals agencies, such as the Administration for Community Living, Administration on Aging, etc., is still uncertain.

We don’t anticipate seeing any specifics at all on how this broad cut would be absorbed among agencies until the Administration delivers the first draft of what they’re calling a "skinny" budget proposal to Congress the week of March 13. Even then, we may not know exactly how the Administration proposes to fund smaller agencies or specific programs. At this time, the President has said there will be no cuts or changes to mandatory programs such as Medicare and Social Security.

As an important reminder, the President’s budget is not a binding policy document, and it does not finalizing funding decisions—those are made by appropriators in Congress. However, the budget document does set an important vision for Administration priorities, and emphasizes that intense advocacy efforts from the NDD community and grassroots will be necessary to prevent these proposals from being realized.

What Happens Next?

The House and Senate returned to DC this week for six weeks of legislative activity, and President Trump will address a joint session of Congress for the first time tonight. We expect the House to take the lead on passing a reconciliation proposal reflecting ACA and Medicaid changes, and send a proposal to the Senate by the end of March. The Senate must complete their own reconciliation bill, and both chambers have to agree on a measure before any changes would be sent to the President. The release of a bare-bones budget from the Administration in March will kick off the federal FY 2018 funding debates in Congress, however, lawmakers must also finish the FY 2017 funding bills by April 28 when the current funding bill expires.

On the State Scene…. (As reported on February 28, 2017 by Terry Steczo, I4A Lobbyist)

Community Reinvestment Program (CRP)/ House Bill 3814

One of the positive development occurring during the current legislative session is the reconstituting of the House Aging Committee. The committee is chaired by Rep. Anna Moeller (D-Elgin). The Minority Spokesperson is Rep. Terri Bryant (R-Mt. Vernon). One of the first orders of business before the committee will be to hold a subject matter hearing on CRP. The Governor also made note of the creation of CRP in his Budget Address. The hearing was supposed to have been held last week but was cancelled and will be rescheduled. I4A has been invited to present testimony.

Also, Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D-Northbrook) has filed House Bill 3814 to try to begin the process of assisting with the issue of immunity if/when the CRP becomes operative. The synopsis of the bill is as follows:

  • House Bill 3814 - Amends the Illinois Act on the Aging. Provides that any person or organization authorized by the Department on Aging to provide services under the Community Care Program shall, in the good faith performance of those services, have immunity from any civil, criminal, or other liability in any civil, criminal, or other proceeding brought as a consequence of the performance of those services. Provides that the State shall indemnify and hold harmless any person or organization authorized by the Department to provide services under the Community Care Program for all the acts, omissions, decisions, or other conduct arising out of the scope of the Community Care Program duties of the person or organization; and that the method of providing indemnification shall be as provided in the State Employee Indemnification Act. Provides that the immunity and indemnification protections in the new provisions apply to the Community Care Program and any related program subsequently established by administrative rule.

Will Fiscal February Lead To March Madness?

For a month where nothing concrete happened there was certainly a lot to digest relating to the prospects of Illinois finally having a budget after almost two years. The Governor proposed his budget in mid-February that was proceeded by a plan from the Illinois Policy Institute that showed how the Illinois budget could be balanced with cuts alone, and in the meantime the Illinois Senate "grand bargain" kept chugging along with some changes and with more to come but with no hint that the effort would be successful.

The Senate's vision of a solution to the budget impasse, the "grand bargain" has taken the shape of a dozen bills that cover taxes, borrowing, procurement reform, workers compensation reform, pension reform, local government consolidation and more. Taxes, obviously, are the big bug-a-boo among those who want to get the crisis over with. Finding enough places to raise enough revenue to get out of the fiscal hole is tough. And finding the votes to pass it is even tougher. The same is true with workers compensation reform. Finding the right balance between labor and business interests is not for the faint of heart. Add pension reform to the mix and you wind up with an Excedrin headache with an incalculable number.

Tax provisions in the "grand bargain" changed over the past few weeks due to push back on some provisions. And they'll be changing again as they look for the right mix that can raise enough money and that will placate enough legislators and the Governor. The original Senate plan provided for an income tax increase to 4.75% and a tax on sugary drinks. The sugary drink proposal went flat and was replaced by a hike in the income tax to 4.99% and a "business opportunity" tax. Then, the "business opportunity" tax was removed and replaced with a widening of sales and services taxes with a reduction in the rate from 6.25% to 5.75%. Sales taxes on food and medicine would come back as part of this proposal after a 40-year hiatus. But, after an objection by the Governor in his budget address expect that to be jettisoned and replaced with something else. Governor Rauner indicated in his budget address that he was "encouraged" by the Senate activities and even gave them some parameters to work with, among which were no sales tax on food and medicine and no taxing of retirement incomes (an issue that never has been on the table).

One day after the budget address Senate President John Cullerton decided, based on the Governor's pronouncements the previous day, to try to move parts of the "grand bargain: through the Senate even though GOP senators objected. The result was less than impressive. The two bills that were the easiest of the dozen, local government consolidation (Senate Bill 3) and procurement reform (Senate Bill 8) were approved with no GOP support for the bipartisan bills. Then the decision was made to call Senate Bill 11, pension reform, which ended Cullerton's push after it was defeated handily. If the "grand bargain" is to come to fruition many more moving parts are going to have to be adjusted before it's ready for prime time. And there is also the real distinct possibility that prime time may never come. Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno has intimated that if there is no Senate action by February 28 the whole process should be scrapped. If that does happen then the misery index will shoot through the ceiling and may stay there for a long while.

The Art of Compromise.

One of the precepts about the Illinois budget impasse that most people accept is that you can't cut nor tax your way out of the mess and back to fiscal health. The solution is going to have to be a combination of both. The Senate "grand bargain" plan calls for both new revenues plus $2.7 billion in cuts. When the Governor publicly endorsed the Senate effort during his budget address one of the more conservative organizations, the Illinois Policy Institute, who has supported Rauner's efforts thus far became apoplectic and one of their writers, in an op-ed piece in the Chicago Tribune just prior to the budget message chastised the Governor and warned him not to become the "governor of capitulation" and urged him to be the one to take a "sledgehammer to the system". They also emphasized that "Rauner should release a plan do what he promised in the campaign trail". They may have forgotten that a part of Rauner's revenue policy proposals was a broadening of sales and services taxes similar to, with the exception of food and medicine, what's contained in the Senate plan. An idea as to what the Institute has in mind might be evidenced by the proposal the Institute released in early February which portrayed a roadmap to balancing the state budget by cutting current expenditures with no new revenues. Among other things the plan calls for

  •  A five-year property tax freeze with future increases tied to statewide median household income rather than the rate of inflation;
  •     The state would keep the $1.75 billion that currently goes to local governments, primarily municipalities;
  •  Municipalities would be allowed to declare bankruptcy to overcome various labor constraints such as prevailing wage and collective bargaining;
  •  State mandates relative to prevailing wage and collective bargaining would be modified;
  •  State Medicaid would be cut by 600,000 individuals, eligibility would be tightened and lower drug costs would be sought by utilizing a pharmacy benefits manager and the Obamacare Medicaid expansion would be   repealed;
  •  New state employees would be placed in a 401k type retirement plan with options for current employees to opt in;
  •  State payroll would be reduced by 10%;
  •  Pension subsidies to local school districts ($970 million) and higher education ($450 million) would end;
  •  The "Edgar pension ramp" would be modified and any actuarial changes resulting in lower assumptions for each of the five state pension systems would be phased in over five years rather than immediately;
  •  Reduce state appropriations to higher education by $500 million to curb higher administrative costs.

Some of the provisions of the plan are workable while others would be dead on arrival with the political makeup of the state and the realities of state governance and policies.

We will keep you posted. Thank you everyone for your continued advocacy efforts on behalf of older adults, caregivers, grandparents/relatives raising grandchildren/children and individuals with disabilities in east central Illinois!

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO:           ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

FROM:     Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:      January 27, 2017

RE:           Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…Excerpted from Source: n4A’s Analysis of the Repeal of the Affordable Care Act and Its Effect on Older Adults. N4a’s Legislative Team: Amy Gotwals and Autumn Campbell

What Would Affordable Care Act (ACA) Repeal Mean for the Aging Network and Older Adults?

Previous proposals to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have focused on both dismantling the federal insurance exchange Marketplace and rolling back state Medicaid expansion—particularly for low-income adults. However, ACA repeal proposals have also targeted both curbing efforts for delivery system reform promulgated through the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) within CMS and also eliminating funding for disease prevention and health promotion activities through the Prevention and Public Health Fund (PPHF). Republicans crafting repeal proposals have also taken aim at efforts to rebalance state LTSS systems toward providing home and community-based options (HCBS).

Additionally, while many older adults age 65 and over would not be directly affected by Marketplace or Medicaid changes in an ACA repeal and/or replacement effort, there are key coverage and financial protections that could be at risk in an ACA repeal. Specifically, n4a evaluates both what changes to Medicaid might mean for the pre-Medicare population ages 54 to 65 and how Medicare benefits and solvency might be affected by ACA repeal.

Considerations for Policymakers in Developing ACA Replacement Proposals

Details about both a timeline for ACA repeal/replacement, as well as specific policy proposals, are vague at this point. However, there are key considerations that stakeholders and advocates should be raising with lawmakers as they discuss both the implications for ACA repeal and the forthcoming replacement packages.

Primarily, Aging Network advocates should be asking both how ACA repeal efforts will preserve and continue to promote integration between health care and social services systems, as well as what lawmakers will do to continue to advance rebalancing efforts promoted through ACA.

Next Steps in Health Care Reform and ACA Advocacy

At this point there are many details still up in the air about exactly how Congress will move forward in reconsidering the ACA and any replacement provisions. National advocates, including n4a, remain focused on ensuring that Members of Congress understand the risks of repealing entrenched health care policy without sufficiently detailed replacement proposals. We encourage local agencies and advocates to echo these concerns to your Senators and Representatives, as well.

It remains to be seen whether Congress—specifically the Senate—will have the votes necessary to pass a repeal package in the coming weeks. A legislative package to eliminate the ACA would not be subject to filibuster and would require only a simple majority vote in the Senate to move to then-President Trump’s desk for signature, although the anticipated timeline for ACA repeal and replacement remains notably ambitious. However, there are currently 10 Republican Senators who have expressed significant concerns with voting to repeal without a clear vision for replacement.

ACA ADVOCACY in ACTION! Please refer to the attached n4a Policy Brief and n4a Advocacy Alert.

On the State Scene….

Even though we heard promising reports, final efforts failed by the General Assembly to bring an end to the Illinois Budget Crisis before the January 26th break in regular session. Both houses come back in session on February 7, 2017. I4a has learned that there continues to be positive movement on the part of lawmakers toward resolving the Illinois budget issue. Mark your calendars…February 15, 2017 is the date of the Governor’s annual Budget Address.

Thank you everyone for your continued advocacy efforts on behalf of older adults, caregivers, grandparents/relatives raising grandchildren/children and individuals with disabilities!

SCR:sr

 ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

 

TO:             To:              ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

 

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

 

DATE:        January 3, 2017

 

RE:             Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…Excerpted from Source: n4A’s Forecast of Policy Activity in a Whirlwind New Year. n4a’s Legislative Team: Amy Gotwals and Autumn Campbell

As we enter into the new year, I have excerpted a number of points from our excellent Advocacy Source - n4a’s January 3, 2017 Legislative Update - to provide you with a legislative forecast on the Federal front. The 115th Congress arrives in Washington this week with Republicans in control of both chambers and a Trump Administration assuming office in less than three weeks. Congressional leadership’s legislative agenda could have major implications for all federal programs, including Older Americans Act (OAA) and other aging programs. The following describes n4a’s current forecast of how the first few months of 2017 may go.  

Budget Reconciliation and Affordable Care Act (ACA) Repeal – n4a’s forecast:

On January 9, the 115th Congress is expected to take up a bare-bones budget resolution for FY 2017. The new Congress will likely pass a budget for a fiscal year that is already three months underway. Traditionally, Congress passes a budget resolution in the spring for the upcoming federal fiscal year. The resolution, which is non-binding and is not signed into law by the President, sets broad priorities for investment and is intended to serve as a guide to appropriations committees, which do the complicated work of establishing and passing funding parameters for federal programs.  

However, passing a budget resolution also gives lawmakers the ability to instruct committees to pass legislation that can enact policy initiatives. This process is known as budget reconciliation. According to n4a, this is a fast-track legislative strategy that requires only a simple majority to pass in the Senate making it immune to filibuster. This means that with a narrow 52-48 majority in the Senate, Republicans have the numbers to pass a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  

Because Congress did not pass a budget resolution for FY 17 last spring, according to n4a, it is expected that Congress will use this opportunity to pass one now and to use the reconciliation process to undo ACA. And, while n4a doesn’t have details on exactly what ACA repeal would look like, or whether there would be a plan to replace it, n4a reports that repeal efforts could occur quickly in January.

Administration’s FY 2018 Budget – n4a’s forecast:

By law, the Administration is supposed to have its federal budget for the upcoming fiscal year (FY 2018) to Congress by the first Monday in February. Traditionally, this document is the first opportunity for a new Administration to lay out priorities for all federal programs—mandatory and discretionary—to Congress. The President’s budget is not a binding, legal document, and it is not considered legislatively in Congress. Rather, it sets a tone and template for the investments and priorities of the President.   However, some experts are predicting that the incoming Administration may forgo releasing a budget altogether. While doing so wouldn’t be illegal, it would be unprecedented.  

Increasing the Debt Limit – n4a’s forecast:

In March, the U.S. will hit its borrowing limit, known as the debt ceiling. The common and recently contentious process of raising the debt ceiling requires Congressional approval. Since 2010, lawmakers have used debt ceiling negotiations as leverage to restrict discretionary spending, impose budget caps and force other offsets to federal programs. According to n4a, while the incoming Administration could use what are called “extraordinary measures” to avoid breaching the borrowing limit until the summer or fall, Congress must eventually act and it is unknown exactly how this Congress will approach increasing the debt ceiling. If lawmakers tie negotiations to spending on federal programs and require offsets, discretionary programs could take a funding hit.  

FY 2017-2018 Federal Funding – n4a’s forecast:

Federal funding debates for both the remainder of FY 17 and the new FY 18 measures will also be considered this spring. In December, Congress extended funding at FY 16 levels for all federal discretionary programs, including OAA and other aging programs, until April 28, 2017. The practice of extending current funding into the future is known as a continuing resolution (CR), and while it provides temporary assurance for federally funded programs, the process also prevents funding or policy changes proposed in appropriations bills from being adopted. By April 28, appropriators in Congress will have to decide whether to simply extend the existing CR through the remainder of FY 17, to take up the FY 17 funding bills (and any changes) that were proposed by the 114th Congress, or possibly but unlikely, to start the process over.   According to n4a, complicating these questions is the fact that Congress will also begin the process of crafting an FY 2018 budget resolution and subsequent appropriations bills this spring as well. Congress may take up the task of considering two separate fiscal years’ spending bills simultaneously or lawmakers may choose to spend their limited time focusing on funding proposals for FY 2018 and pass a CR for the remainder of FY 17.  

Changes to Medicaid and Medicare – n4a’s forecast:

Congressional leaders and the incoming Administration have floated significant structural changes to federal health care programs, Medicaid and possibly Medicare, as well as the federal tax code. FY 2018 budget reconciliation would provide the most unencumbered path to make these changes. According to n4a, Congress will likely use reconciliation of the FY 2017 budget first thing in January to repeal ACA, but that still leaves FY 2018 budget reconciliation as an option to move other controversial legislation later this year.   It is expected that proposals to significantly restructure Medicaid and the federal tax code will be introduced this summer. However, it is less certain whether Congress would also consider major structural changes to Medicare. According to n4a, establishing a block grant or per-capita cap system for Medicaid seems most likely, and President-Elect Trump’s nominees to lead both HHS and CMS have a track record of supporting such systems reforms. Either a block grant or per-capita cap could have major implications for Medicaid Long Term Services Supports beneficiaries.

  What Can Aging Advocates Do? It is more critical now more than ever that local aging advocates weigh in with lawmakers and stress the need to protect and adequately fund OAA programs. It is also critical that we keep up the drumbeat about the need for funding increases for OAA and other aging programs!

On the State Scene…. The Stop-Gap Budget Lapsed December 31, 2016.

The Illinois General Assembly is scheduled to be back in session (“Lame Duck Session”) on January 9 and 10, 2017 - two days before the next session is to be inaugurated on January 11, 2017. According to I4A’s Legislative Liaison, it is possible that something productive affecting the State’s budget could occur. During the “Lame Duck Session”, the vote requirement for a law to become effective immediately is reduced from a three-fifths to a simple majority. This presents an environment that is ripe for positive action. I4A is actively advocating for a budget resolution during this time.

Once the 100th General Assembly session commences, everything starts from the beginning. If there is some agreement on the budget, it will take time for the legislative process to allow appropriate action. One date of note - February 15th – which is the date of the Governor’s annual Budget Address.

100th General Assembly – New Representatives affecting PSA 05:

    • Brad Halbrook (R-Shelbyville) is replacing Rep. Adam Brown (R-Champaign)

General Assembly Session Schedule/Deadline Dates

Relevant dates for the remainder of the 2016 and the 2017 legislative session:

    • "Lame Duck" January Session - January 9-1
    • January 10 – 99th General Assembly End
    • January 11 - 100th General Assembly Begin
    • January 25 - Governor's State of the State Addres
    • February 3 - Last day to request House Bills to be drafte
    • February 10 - Bill introduction deadline - House and Senat
    • February 15 - Governor's Budget Addres
    • March 17 - Senate Committee Deadlin
    • March 31 - House Committee Deadlin
    • April 10 - April 23 - Spring Brea
    • April 28 - 3rd Reading Deadline - House and Senat
    • May 12 - Senate Committee Deadline - House Bill
    • May 19 - House Committee Deadline - Senate Bill
    • May 26 - 3rd Reading Deadline - House and Senat
    • May 31 - Adjournment

Wishing everyone a very Happy and Prosperous New Year!

SCR:sr

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

 

TO:             To:               ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

 

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

 

DATE:        December 13, 2016

 

RE:             Director’s Report – Federal Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…from N4A Legislative Update –Continuing Resolution passed through April 28, 2017. N4A Legislative Team: Amy Gotwals and Autumn Campbell

Republican leaders in Congress deferred major decisions on FY 2017 federal funding by passing a bill late last week to extend current funding levels until April 28, 2017. This strategy, known as a continuing resolution (CR), means that federal agencies and programs have funding certainty through most of April. However, a priority item for the 115th Congress, beginning in January, will be to figure out a longer-term funding strategy for a fiscal year that will be half-over by the time the next funding deadline arrives.  

What Does a Continuing Resolution Mean for OAA and other Aging Programs?

Passage of the CR holds some good news for advocates who were concerned about the Senate’s proposed elimination of the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) and cuts to senior employment programs. Approval of the CR means that those cuts are off the table—at least in the near-term. However, the CR also means that House-proposed increases for some OAA programs, including Title III B Supportive Services and Title III C Nutrition Services will not be a reality in the near future.
 
In order to stay under the budget caps for FY 2017, which were established in the 2015 Bipartisan Budget Agreement, an across-the-board cut of 0.19 percent was included in the bill. How this cut will be distributed across programs, however, will be determined by individual agencies, so we don’t have details at this point about what ongoing funding levels for OAA programs will be.  

Federal Funding Outlook for the 115th Congress

The move to punt finalizing FY 17 funding until the spring means that the 115th Congress will have homework from the current Congress. The incoming Trump Administration, eager to have a say in spending levels, asked leading Congressional Republicans to leave long-term decisions about FY 17 until next year.  

However, this move also complicates the list of necessary legislative action early in the new year. Not only must Congress work to either finalize or further extend funding for the current fiscal year, but as of early spring, lawmakers on the budget and appropriations committees will begin their annual work to work to determine funding levels for FY 2018 as well.  

Congress and the Trump Administration will also have to deal with the politically contentious move to increase the country’s borrowing authority when the current debt ceiling is reached in March. Additionally, the current budget agreement, which raised the budget caps for FY 2016 and FY 2017, expires at the end of FY 17, and lawmakers will have to decide what—if anything—to do about drastically lower spending authority next year for federal defense and non-defense discretionary programs.  

We also expect to see another layer of complexity in early year spending negotiations as lawmakers consider the unusual possibility of passing two Congressional budget resolutions next year. Doing so would prompt two opportunities to use a complicated budgeting process, known as reconciliation, to pass controversial, but filibuster-proof, legislation. We expect Affordable Care Act repeal (and possibly broad structural changes to the Medicaid and Medicare programs) could be achieved through this process next year. If lawmakers proceed with that strategy, we would anticipate ACA repeal early in the year through a budget reconciliation process for FY 2017 (the current budget year) and possible FY 2018 reconciliation proposals in the late summer or fall detailing other major changes to Medicaid and possibly Medicare.  

What Can Aging Advacates Do?

At this point, predictions are, at best, just that—predictions. We are not sure of the exact course lawmakers will take to both finalize federal funding and make major changes to health care programs. However, we do know it is more critical than ever that local aging advocates weigh in with lawmakers and stress the need to protect and adequately funding OAA programs. It is also critical that we keep up the drumbeat about the need for funding increases for OAA and other aging programs.

Stay Tuned…

Stay tuned for updates about the FY 2017 and FY 2018 appropriations process as they are available. In our advocacy role, I will contact our Members of Congress with these important messages! We encourage you to do the same – please visit ECIAAA’s website at www.eciaaa.org for more information. Thank you!

Wishing everyone a Wonderful Holiday Season!

SCR:sr

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

 

TO:              To:              ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

 

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

 

DATE:        November 21, 2016

 

RE:             Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…

Presidential Election – Donald Trump’s Transition Team is underway and he is scheduled to be inaugurated on January 20, 2017. Where Donald Trump stands on Aging Issues (Source: AARP Bulletin, Vol. 57, No.8, October 2016).

Social Security. Mr. Trump reported that “Social Security will provide the full and complete benefits promised to seniors. Ensuring that Americans receive the benefits they have earned is high on my priority list.”

Age Discrimination in the Workforce. Mr. Trump reported that he would ‘enforce legal prohibitions against such discrimination, including enforcing such rules as it pertains to the abuse of visa programs that replace older workers. Seniors are seasoned workers who add experience and wisdom to a dynamic, 21st-century workforce, and they ought to be respected and protected.”

Caregiving. The Trump plan will provide Americans the option of opening dependent care savings accounts (DCSAs) so that they can plan for future expenses relating to elder care. A maximum annual contribution of $2,000 to a dependent care savings account and earnings on the account will not be subject to tax. Funds for the elderly will be used for adult day care, in-home or long-term care services. Source: Donald Trump’s official website.

Health Care Costs. The Trump plan will control Health Care Costs by eliminating of parts of the Affordable Care Act. Source: Donald Trump’s official website.

On the State Scene…Source: Terry Steczo, I4A Legislative Consultant, Government Strategy Associates

Veto Session in Progress

The General Assembly was in session last week and the week after Thanksgiving for its annual veto session. While only 30 bills are on the veto docket these sessions, especially post-election sessions, are often filled with the emergence of important issues and/or the beginning of discussions designed to come up with agreements by the end of the legislative session in January.

There are two huge issues that could be discussed during these two weeks and that could have long lasting impacts: the budget and pension reform.

According to recent estimates, without an influx of new revenues the budget deficit for FY 2017 is headed in the $9 billion range. The stopgap budget was supposed to get the state past the elections where, hopefully, some agreements on spending, taxes and policy could be reached to get our fiscal house in order. However, that is not nor was it ever a guarantee. Now that November 8 has passed the same issues are on the table and there, at least for now, are no serious discussions on the schedule for the Governor and legislative leaders. Most likely should there be some agreement it would wait until January for legislative action. It takes a three-fifths majority to enact a bill with an immediate effective date prior to January 1 but only a simple majority after. That would give the General Assembly eleven or so days to give final action to any agreement.

The fiscal discussion is revolving around revenues. How do you come up with a $9 billion bridge to help balance the spreadsheet? When the temporary income tax expired two years ago the yearly take was approximately $4.3 billion. That's only half way to the goal. Trying to find the right mix is going to be difficult, and trying to find legislators willing to vote for the package is going to be almost impossible.

Regarding pensions, there was an agreement between the Governor and leaders in late June that legislation to benefit Chicago schools could be approved if the General Assembly approved pension reform before the end of the year. Finding a constitutional pension reform package should be a non-partisan issue so it is assumed that there will be some plan derived before the end of the year. And, it just so happens that SB 2282 that contains the Chicago plan was sent to the Governor on November 7 giving him until January 6 to act. A good guess is that a pension reform plan will be considered and approved around that same time. It will take the courts about two years to determine the constitutionality of any reform plan but the agreement says only that one need be passed and it's even money that will happen. Another "encouragement" that should induce the parties to work speedily toward a pension agreement is a report that the annual pension liability is going to increase by $1 billion next year, increasing to $8.8 billion from $7.8 billion.

Session Schedule/Deadline Dates

Here are relevant dates for the 2016 legislative session:

    • November 29, 30, December 1 - 2nd Veto Session week
    • Early January Session - TBA
    • January 11 – 99th General Assembly Ends
    • January 12 - 100th General Assembly Begins

On a personal note…

My ankle continues to heal. The doctor prescribed a bone building drug which has made a significant difference. Thank you for the well-wishes during my recovery. I am working everyday so please do not hesitate in contacting me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or on my mobile phone – 309-533-3232.

Wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!

SCR:sr

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA Service Providers

FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE: September 30, 2016

RE: Director’s Report – Federal & State Legislative/Advocacy Update

On the Federal Scene…n4a legislative update:

Congress Speeds Short-Term Funding Bill to Passage --Late-Breaking Deal Includes Half-Percent Reduction to All Programs:

Congress was able to avoid a government shutdown in the weeks preceding a national election by passing a temporary stopgap funding bill, known as a continuing resolution (CR), to keep the federal lights on until December 9. In a lame-duck session following the election, lawmakers will have roughly a month to agree on a strategy for the longer-term (and hopefully final) federal funding bills for FY 2017. Facing a September 30 deadline to achieve a federal funding agreement for FY 17, lawmakers negotiated down to the wire on a strategy to provide disaster assistance funding to Flint, MI—a debate that stalled progress on the CR for several weeks. Once a solution to the Flint funding issue was achieved, the Senate and the House hustled the measure through bicameral approval and to the President, who swiftly signed the measure into law. Neither chamber then wasted any time fleeing Washington to head back to their districts and states to campaign.

What’s in the Continuing Resolution? The CR funds federal agencies through December 9. In theory, the agreement simply continues FY 2016 funding levels into the first months of FY 17, and therefore prevents any policy or funding changes the House or Senate proposed for FY 17 from being implemented. However, there are a few exceptions that were included in the proposal to respond to recent national challenges and adjust spending levels to account for expiring cost-savings provisions in FY 2016.

The CR approves $1.1 billion for Zika response and preparedness; $500 million for Louisiana flood assistance; and full-year FY 17 funding for military construction and Department of Veterans Affairs. Additionally, because cost-savings measures—which are essentially savings gimmicks that were included in the final FY 16 funding bill—do not carry forward into FY 17, lawmakers had to reduce overall spending by 0.5 percent. This across-the-board reduction accounts for what would have been a $5 billion difference between last-year’s funding levels with last-year’s built-in spending reductions and continuing last-year’s funding after those reductions expired. This is a common budgetary practice, and overall funding levels may even out if Congress manages to finalize the remaining 11 funding bills later this fall. Unknown at this point are details on how OAA and other aging program funding will be released during the CR period (October 1 through December 9. We will share details on any specific ACL/AoA allocation dynamics as we learn them. Federal Funding Outlook Following the Election Progress on FY 2017 appropriations this fall will likely depend on the outcome of the November election. If the Administration and/or the Senate change party affiliation, a lame-duck Congress may be reticent to make appropriations decisions before a new Congress and Administration take office in January. If that is the case, we could see either a series of short-term CRs, or a longer-term CR, extend into the first months of the new year. Alternatively, the current Congress may move to finish their work this year and achieve a deal on federal funding for the remainder of FY 2017. Such a deal would probably include a massive funding bill that lumps all agencies into one legislative package—known as an omnibus—or it could include a series of smaller, longer-term bills that lump some agencies together—called minibuses. n4a and many other advocates in Washington are advocating for lawmakers to reach a deal for FY 17 appropriations following the election and to reject repeatedly extending FY 16 funding levels through continuing resolutions. Should the House and the Senate pursue this path, they would need to reconcile differences in each chamber’s funding bill—including significant differences in funding levels proposed for Older Americans Act and other aging programs.

n4a has been talking to appropriators and staff to encourage them to accept the House-proposed funding levels for OAA programs, which include a number of modest, but important, increases to supportive services, meals and other OAA programs. The House bill also rejects Senate’s elimination of the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) What Can Aging Advocates Do? Passing a CR was important to avoid a government shutdown, but it is also critical that local advocates weigh in with lawmakers and stress the need to finish FY 2017 appropriations this year. It is also critical that we keep up the drumbeat about the need for funding increases for OAA and other aging programs. Stay tuned for updates about the FY 2017 appropriations process as they are available, and continue to contact your Members of Congress with these important messages!

On the State Scene….Since July 1, 2016 - Director Susan C. Real participated in i4a Legislative Committee Calls and presents the following report:

Recent Legislation enacted that impacts Illinois older citizens:

SB 2929 Public Act 99-0857

SB 2929 will require Care Coordination Units (CCU), hospitals, and nursing homes to perform the Pre-Admission Screening (PAS) process as it was executed prior to a 2014 law change. This will require CCUs to provide required assessment documentation directly to a nursing home prior to a patient’s discharge rather than providing it to a hospital discharge planner to send to a nursing home.

If a CCU is unable to complete a PAS prior to a patient's discharge, they are to report the incident to the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA). IDoA and HFS will also be required to promulgate rules to address these incidents. As written, all involved parties will still be required to follow state and federal laws and regulations regarding the PAS assessment process. This includes the requirement that a hospital provide notification to the CCU 24 hours prior to a patient’s discharge and that the CCU perform the PAS prior to a patient leaving the hospital.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0857

HB 4552 Public Act 99-0547

This is a Department on Aging initiative that comes from Adult Protective Services (APS).

This bill adds the State’s Attorney Office to entities which are entitled to request Adult Protective Services records, which will enable APS to better serve its vulnerable population by expediting investigations of abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0547

HB 4826 Public Act 99-0530

This Department on Aging initiative comes from members of the Adult Protective Services’ (APS) fatality review teams.

Currently, some Planning and Services Area’s (PSA) fatality review teams have an insufficient caseload of suspicious deaths to justify six meetings per year. In order to maintain strong engagement from volunteer review team members, it is important that each meeting be as productive as possible. HB 4826 reduces the minimum number of annual meetings from six to four. They may still meet more frequently when determined necessary by the review team. Effective Jan. 1, 2017.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0530

HB 5009 Public Act 99-0712

Currently, the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (LTCOP) serves residents of Institutes for Mental Diseases. As these facilities become Specialized Mental Health Rehabilitation Facilities (SMHRF), the LTCOP should continue to serve those residents. HB 5009 extends the LTCOP's jurisdiction to include those residing in SMHRFs. This bill also adds a 3 year limit on provisional licenses for Specialized Mental Health Rehabilitation Facilities (SMHRF).

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0712 

HB 5603 Public Act 99-0784

HB 5603 makes necessary changes to improve Public Act 99-430, the Electronic Monitoring in Long-Term Care Facilities Act.

This bill adds references to facilities licensed under the MC/DD Act. It also requires the nursing home facility to shut off recording if a new roommate does not consent to recording (changes MAY to SHALL). The Department of Public Health’s electronic monitoring assistance fund will be subject to appropriation. It includes a provision prohibiting intentional discrimination and retaliation against a resident for consenting to electronic monitoring.

It also includes necessary references in other statutes, corrected an erroneous Life Safety Code reference (2012 instead of 2000), and states that provisions in the bill shall not be delayed due to rulemaking.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0784

HB 5805 Public Act 99-0820

As described in 720 ILCS 5/17-56, all financial exploitation crimes against the elderly or those with disabilities are felony offenses. The previous statute of limitation for these cases, 720 ILCS 5/3-5(b), only allows prosecution to be held after three years.

This bill allows prosecution within seven years of the last act committed for the crimes described in the Act. These include financial exploitation of an elderly person or person with a disability. By adding 4 years to the statute of limitation for cases of financial exploitation, victims who may not have known they had been exploited will have more time to pursue justice.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0820

HB 5924 Public Act 99-0821

Under this bill, guardians of a ward shall make reasonable attempts to contact the ward’s adult children, if they have requested notification, in the event that the ward is admitted to a hospital, hospice, passes away, and of their funeral arrangements. The court may also order the guardian to allow visitation between a ward and their adult children if it is substantiated that the children were unreasonably prevented from doing so. The Public Guardian and the Office of State Guardian are excluded from the new requirements of this bill.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0821

In conclusion….

Susan C. Real, Executive Director, will continue to provide advocacy updates – at the National and State level – to the members of the ECIAAA Corporate Board and Advisory Council on regular basis. Please contact me – any time – with your comments and concerns at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or on my mobile phone – 309-533-3232.

Thank you!

SCR:sr

 ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO:                  ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD & ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS
FROM:            Susan C. Real, Executive Director  SCR
DATE:            September 21, 2016
RE:                 Director’s Report - Federal & State Legislative Update

On the State Scene….Since July 1, 2016 - Director Susan C. Real participated in i4a Legislative Committee Calls and presents the following report:

Recent Legislation enacted that impacts Illinois older citizens:

SB 2929 Public Act 99-0857

SB 2929 will require Care Coordination Units (CCU), hospitals, and nursing homes to perform the Pre-Admission Screening (PAS) process as it was executed prior to a 2014 law change. This will require CCUs to provide required assessment documentation directly to a nursing home prior to a patient’s discharge rather than providing it to a hospital discharge planner to send to a nursing home.

If a CCU is unable to complete a PAS prior to a patient's discharge, they are to report the incident to the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA). IDoA and HFS will also be required to promulgate rules to address these incidents. As written, all involved parties will still be required to follow state and federal laws and regulations regarding the PAS assessment process. This includes the requirement that a hospital provide notification to the CCU 24 hours prior to a patient’s discharge and that the CCU perform the PAS prior to a patient leaving the hospital.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0857

HB 4552 Public Act 99-0547

This is a Department on Aging initiative that comes from Adult Protective Services (APS).

This bill adds the State’s Attorney Office to entities which are entitled to request Adult Protective Services records, which will enable APS to better serve its vulnerable population by expediting investigations of abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0547

HB 4826 Public Act 99-0530

This Department on Aging initiative comes from members of the Adult Protective Services’ (APS) fatality review teams.

Currently, some Planning and Services Area’s (PSA) fatality review teams have an insufficient caseload of suspicious deaths to justify six meetings per year. In order to maintain strong engagement from volunteer review team members, it is important that each meeting be as productive as possible. HB 4826 reduces the minimum number of annual meetings from six to four. They may still meet more frequently when determined necessary by the review team. Effective Jan. 1, 2017.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0530

HB 5009 Public Act 99-0712

Currently, the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (LTCOP) serves residents of Institutes for Mental Diseases. As these facilities become Specialized Mental Health Rehabilitation Facilities (SMHRF), the LTCOP should continue to serve those residents. HB 5009 extends the LTCOP's jurisdiction to include those residing in SMHRFs. This bill also adds a 3 year limit on provisional licenses for Specialized Mental Health Rehabilitation Facilities (SMHRF).

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0712

HB 5603 Public Act 99-0784

HB 5603 makes necessary changes to improve Public Act 99-430, the Electronic Monitoring in Long-Term Care Facilities Act.

This bill adds references to facilities licensed under the MC/DD Act. It also requires the nursing home facility to shut off recording if a new roommate does not consent to recording (changes MAY to SHALL). The Department of Public Health’s electronic monitoring assistance fund will be subject to appropriation. It includes a provision prohibiting intentional discrimination and retaliation against a resident for consenting to electronic monitoring.

It also includes necessary references in other statutes, corrected an erroneous Life Safety Code reference (2012 instead of 2000), and states that provisions in the bill shall not be delayed due to rulemaking.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0784

HB 5805 Public Act 99-0820

As described in 720 ILCS 5/17-56, all financial exploitation crimes against the elderly or those with disabilities are felony offenses. The previous statute of limitation for these cases, 720 ILCS 5/3-5(b), only allows prosecution to be held after three years.

This bill allows prosecution within seven years of the last act committed for the crimes described in the Act. These include financial exploitation of an elderly person or person with a disability. By adding 4 years to the statute of limitation for cases of financial exploitation, victims who may not have known they had been exploited will have more time to pursue justice.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0820

HB 5924 Public Act 99-0821

Under this bill, guardians of a ward shall make reasonable attempts to contact the ward’s adult children, if they have requested notification, in the event that the ward is admitted to a hospital, hospice, passes away, and of their funeral arrangements. The court may also order the guardian to allow visitation between a ward and their adult children if it is substantiated that the children were unreasonably prevented from doing so. The Public Guardian and the Office of State Guardian are excluded from the new requirements of this bill.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=099-0821

In conclusion….

Susan C. Real, Executive Director, will continue to provide advocacy updates – at the National and State level – to the members of the ECIAAA Corporate Board and Advisory Council on regular basis. Please contact me – any time – with your comments and concerns at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or on my mobile phone – 309-533-3232.

Thank you!

SCR:sr

Senior Information Services (SIS)/Coordinated Point of Entry (CPoE) Designation for McLean County, Livingston County and DeWitt County

 
MEMORANDUM
 
TO: Members of ECIAAA Corporate Board, Members of ECIAAA Advisory Council, ECIAAA Service Provider Directors
FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR
RE: Senior Information Services (SIS)/Coordinated Point of Entry (CPoE) Designation for McLean County, Livingston County and DeWitt County
 
ECIAAA is pleased to announce that Community Care Systems, Inc. will serve as the new Senior Information Service Provider/Coordinated Point of Entry under emergency designation effective July 1, 2016. Please note, this transition is still underway, but we wanted to inform the Aging Network of the emergency designation:
 
SIS/CPoE Provider: Community Care Services, Inc. (CCSI)
CCU Director: Marsha J. Johnson
SIS Clients can call the following telephone numbers for assistance:
Mclean & Livingston---309-661-6400
DeWitt ---217-935-4560
 
Marsha Johnson, CCSI CCU Director, brings extensive experience in aging programs to east central Illinois. CCSI serves as the designated Care Coordination Unit for Illinois’ Community Care Program in the counties of McLean, Clark, Cumberland, Shelby and Moultrie (since FY 1998). CCSI also serves as the designated Coordinated Point of Entry/SIS Provider in Shelby County (since FY 2011). Marsha Johnson, and her CCSI SIS/CPoE Team, will respond to the needs of clients in a comprehensive and timely manner. ECIAAA would like to express its appreciation to Marsha and her staff for their dedication to providing quality services to older adults in east central Illinois. Thank you!

 

Director’s Report - State Legislative/Advocacy Update

MEMORANDUM
TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS &
ECIAAA Service Providers
FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR
DATE: July 1, 2016
RE: Director’s Report - State Legislative/Advocacy Update

Good News – But Our Work is Not Finished!
Illinois House of Representatives and Senate have unanimously approved bills to fund senior programs for both FY 2016 and six months into FY 2017. Governor Rauner is expected to sign.  ECIAAA is uncertain as to how this will affect the final allocations to service providers;
however, we are in the process of finalizing FY 2016 budget directives for release next week to service providers.

Area Agency Programs Affected By the Budget Bill:
Home Delivered Meals, Area Agency Planning & Service Grants (GRF Match & Non-Match) which supports the CPoE/SIS programs in PSA 05, and the Long Term Care Ombudsman Program..

Illinois’ Authority to Draw Down Federal Funds:
According to our legislative contacts, the action taken by the General Assembly on June 30 will reinstate Illinois’ authority to draw down federal funds for FY 2016 4th quarter.

Service Provider FY 2016 Budget Directives:
ECIAAA expects to release to service providers next week.

Thank you to each and every one of you for your advocacy efforts! Have a wonderful 4th of July Holiday!

Director’s Report – PATH will Terminate Senior Programs June 30, 2016

MEMORANDUM

TO:                  ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD & ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS

FROM:            Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:            June 23, 2016

RE:                 Director’s Report – PATH will Terminate Senior Programs June 30, 2016

It is with a heavy heart that I convey the news that PATH (Providing Access to Help) will terminate the Older Americans Act Title IIIB/Illinois General Revenue (GRF) services they currently provide to 2,300 older adults and caregivers in McLean County, Livingston County and DeWitt County effective June 30, 2016.   PATH is the designated Coordinated Point of Entry/Senior Information Service Provider – providing information and assistance on needed benefit and insurance programs. In addition, PATH serves as the Caregiver Advisor – serving caregivers and grandparents raising grandchildren. And finally, PATH provides the Gerontological Counseling/PEARLS Program which is an evidence-based healthy aging program to older adults benefiting from supportive counseling interventions. On July 1, 2016, these services will no longer be available in the counties of McLean, Livingston and DeWitt.

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Director’s Report - Federal & State Legislative Update

MEMORANDUM
 
TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD & ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS

FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE: June 15, 2016

RE: Director’s Report - Federal & State Legislative Update

Federal Update –Senate Releases FY 2017 Labor HHS Spending Plan Details (source document – June 14, 2016 n4a Legislative Update).

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Get in touch

Location

ECIAAA
1003 Maple Hill Road
Bloomington, IL 61705-9327

Contact

Email: aginginfo@eciaaa.org
Phone: 309-829-2065
Fax: 309-829-6021

Opening hours

Mon-Fri: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
Sat-Sun: CLOSED

Seniors

Seniors may call toll free:
Phone: 1-800-888-4456