The Older Iowans Legislature is a statewide non-partisan, non-profit volunteer organization. Its members advocate for state legislators and the Governor to sign legislation that will result in an improved “Quality of Life for Older Iowans”.
The Older Iowans Legislature places special emphasis on the frail elderly; those citizens who have contributed much to our society, but have exhausted their resources and in need of assistance to lead meaningful lives.
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Tuesday January 30, 2018
Members of the Older Iowans Legislature Board of Directors visited with key members and leadership of the Iowa House of Representatives and State Senate on Tuesday, January 30, 2018.
Board members first met with Linda Miller, Director of the Department on Aging to discuss her legislative initiatives. The Director informed us that she is working on a Pre-Medicaid Plan modeled on a similar program in Minnesota. The program aims to keep people in their own homes and reduce costs. She is gathering information in order to establish a proto type of the program in Iowa possibly as early as 2019.
Director Miller is not asking to restore funding for the Long-Term Care Ombudsman. We support her standing that if there is an increase in funding for this program, it should not come from the Department on Aging as the Long-Term Care Ombudsman is a separate organization. Funding for this program should be done through Appropriations at the end of the session.
Board members had good visits with Representatives Heaton, Kaufmann, Speaker Upmeyer, Senators Segebart, Bolkcom and Senate Majority Leader Dix plus a visit with Paige Thorson from the Governor’s office.
Representative Bobby Kaufmann has introduced our Housing Sex Offenders Bill as House File 2167. It has been forwarded to the House Public Safety Committee. It is anticipated that Senator Segebart will introduce a similar bill in the Senate.
Board member Tony Vola met with Senator Whitver regarding the review of tax credits. We heard mixed messages regarding this topic. It looks like this issue will be discussed this year and if any action is taken this session it will be on the personal side with discussion and possible action on the corporate side being delayed to next year.
OIL Board members expressed our support for the guardian and conservatorship proposals.
Our conversations with legislators indicated that there is some movement on a centralized direct care workforce and some discussion about moving caregivers from the Department of Public Health to the Department on Aging.
Finally, we discussed our proposal for Governor Reynolds to issue an Executive Order, which would create a Senior Living Coordinating Committee and which would be tasked with developing a coordinated strategy for meeting the needs of Iowa’s seniors.
We emphasized that we felt it would be best if the Governor issue this Executive Order although we did hear from legislators that if she does not issue the Executive Order that a bill could be introduced to create such a committee.
OIL Board members participating in our Targeted Day on the Hill included Chair Helene Magee, Vice-Chair Larry Kudej, Secretary Ron Jome, Legislative Liaison Bob Welsh, Tony Vola, Monica McCarthy, and Kay Fisk.
The first funnel date is Friday February 16, 2018. Please follow our emails regarding action on our bills. We will be calling on all of our members to contact their legislators and ask for support of our bills.
Chair, Older Iowans Legislature
Members and friends of the Older Iowans Legislature
Targeted meetings with legislative leadership January 30
On Tuesday January 30, seven members of the Older Iowans Legislature Board of Directors spent five hours at the Iowa Capitol meeting with seven legislative leaders of the House and Senate, one department head, and one assistant to the Governor to more fully explain the Priority Bills/Issues of the Older Iowans Legislature.
Thanks to Helene Magee, Chair of the Older Iowans Legislature, for her telephone and email time in arranging the above meetings before the OIL delegates arrived at the Capitol.
Priority Issues/Bills of the 2017 Older Iowans Legislature
• Alternative funding of AAA’s for unmet needs
• The 2018 Iowa General Assembly shall make a complete review of the Iowa tax credits and eliminate those credits no longer needed and use a portion of the money saved to provide additional funding to the Iowa Area Agencies on Aging to fund currently unmet needs.
• Housing sexual offenders
• There is a shortage of restricted housing facilities for aging sexual offenders who have completed their sentences but cannot be safely released into the general population.
• The Iowa Department of Human Services and the Iowa Department of Corrections shall meet to coordinate and attempt to resolve the housing shortage for sexual offenders by instituting an RFP process whereby both in-and out-of-state entities will be asked for restricted proposals for this group.
• Funding Long-Term Care Ombudsman
• Provide additional funding for the Long-Term Care Ombudsman’s Office sufficient to restore the funding cuts in the last FY by one or both of the following two methods:
• Increasing the licensing fees of long term care facilities, and/or
• Earmarking certain fees collected by other agencies for services normally performed by the Long-Term Care Ombudsman’s Office. Examples include the Civil Money Penalty Fund or the Medicaid Fraud Fund.
• Creating a Senior Living Coordinating Committee composed of the directors of state departments and legislative and citizen representatives.
• The Senior Living Coordinating Committee would be responsible for the development of a coordinated strategy for meeting some of the needs of older adults.
• Easing the workforce shortage of health care CNA’s and Home Health Aides
2018 Iowa General Assembly bills related to Older Iowans Legislature Priority Issues/Bills
ALTERNATIVE FUNDING OF AAA’s FOR UNMET NEEDS
• House File 2121: A bill for an Act establishing a voter-approved senior services property tax levy.
• "This bill establishes a county senior services property tax levy that may be imposed by the county board of supervisors following receipt of a petition and majority approval at election by the voters of the county. The levy may not exceed 30 cents per $1,000 of assessed value and must be used for the purpose of contracting with persons to provide senior services within the county."
• January 29, 2018: Introduced, referred to Ways and Means
HOUSING SEXUAL OFFENDERS
Identical bills in House and Senate: "The bill provides that the department of human services and the department of corrections shall cooperate in the coordination of resolving the lack of sufficient housing for aging sex offenders who qualify for release from the custody of human services or the department of corrections. The cooperation shall lead to the implementation of a request for proposal process that gives due consideration to in-state and out-of-state placement options utilizing existing facilities including vacant facilities."
• House File 2167: A bill for an Act relating to the placement of sex offenders who qualify for release from the custody of the department of human services or the department of corrections.
• January 31, 2018: Introduced, referred to Public Safety
• February1, 2018: Subcommittee: Worthan, Hager, and Olson
• Senate File 2143: A bill for an Act relating to the placement of sex offenders who qualify for release from the custody of the department of human services or the department of corrections.
• January 31, 2018: Introduced, referred to Judiciary
• January 31, 2018: Subcommittee: Garrett, Schultz, and Taylor
FUNDING LONG-TERM CARE OMBUDSMAN
SENIOR LIVING COORDINATING COMMITTEE
WORKFORCE SHORTAGE OF HEALTH CARE CNA’s
• Senate File 2159: A bill for an Act relating to the implementation of a centralized direct care workforce database.
• " This bill requires the department of inspections and appeals to expand the registry of nurse aides to include a database to maintain the verified education and training records, credentials or certifications, and experience of all direct care workers. The purposes of the centralized direct care workforce database are to increase the portability of direct care worker records, credentials or certifications, and experience across settings; lessen the burden on direct care workers and employers in the recruitment, selection, and employment of direct care workers; and provide the data necessary to ensure a well-prepared direct care workforce to meet the growing demand for these services.
• February 1, 2018: Introduced, referred to Human Resources
• House File 2177: A bill for an Act relating to the planning, development, and implementation of a centralized direct care workforce database.
• "The bill requires the department of inspections and appeals to convene a workgroup of stakeholders to plan, develop, and implement a centralized direct care workforce database as an extension of the Iowa nurse aide registry. The purposes of the database are to ensure that the direct care workforce, employers, and consumers have access to a central database that provides information related to direct care worker verified education and training records, credentials or certifications, and experience; to provide for portability of training and credentials across settings; to lessen the burden on workers and employers and provide employers and consumers with access to information in the recruitment, selection, and employment of direct care workers; and to provide the data necessary to ensure a well-prepared direct care workforce to meet the growing demand for their services."
• February 1, 2018: Introduced, referred to Human Resources
• February 1, 2018: Subcommittee: Jacobsen, Anderson, and Best
• House File 2212: A bill for an Act relating to the implementation of a centralized direct care workforce database
• Similar to House File 2177
• Senate Study Bill 3123: A bill for an Act providing for the designation of a caregiver relating to a patient’s stay at a hospital.
Secretary, Board of Directors, Older Iowans Legislature