House State Government Committee
House Bill 353: People First was heard in the House Committee on StateGovernment today. Representative Verla Inkso presented on the bill. This legislation would direct bill draft to use people first language where appropriate when drafting new legislation and new rules. Karen Stallings, executive director of Self Advocates of North Carolina, spoke to the importance of passing this legislation. Ms. Stallings spoke to the efforts of self advocates across the state who are lobbying to change the way people view the community by shifting focus from the disability to the person.
Words have power and when we use words to limit a group by focusing on a medical diagnosis rather than the inherent worth of the person we do a disservice to our communities.
HB353 People First-Insko
This bill is identical to the Senate bill. It will direct bill drafting to use people first language where appropriate in the writing of new legislation and rules.
The House Aging Committee met this week to hear the following bills.
HB 138 Increase Adult Day Care Reimbursement Rates
HB 139: Dentistry Funds for Special Care Populations
HB 141: Senior Center Funds
HB 142: Home and Community Block Grant Funds
All of these bills are recommendations of the North Carolina Study Commission on Aging. There was limited discussion regarding these bills. Committee members did request clarification regarding the purchase of two additional mobile dental units.
All of the bills received favorable reports and were re referred as needed. All have been sent to Appropriations.
HB 138: Increase Adult Day Care Reimursement Rate-Farmer-Butterfield
This bill would appropriate funds to the state adult day care fund and to the home and community care block grant to provide a rate increase for adult day services as recommended by the North Carolina Study Commission on Aging.
The appropriation for this is one million fifty-nine thousand five hundred sixty-one dollars ($1,059,561) for the 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 fiscal years.
Of the funds appropriated there will be $561,357 dollars put in the State Adult Day Care Fund and $498,204 dollars in the Home and Community Care Block Grant. The funds will be used to support a not less than 5.00 per day per client rate increase.
HB 139: Dentistry Funds for Special Care Populations-Farmer-Butterfield
This bill will appropriate funds to the Division of Public Health, Department of Health and Human Services, for the purchase of additional mobile dental units, as recommended by the North Carolina Study Commission on Aging. The appropriation for this legislation is two hundred thousand dollars ($200,000) for the 2009-1020 fiscal year, and the sum of two hundred thousand dollars ($200,000) for the 2010-2011 fiscal years.
HB141: Senior Center Funds-Farmer Butterfield
This bill would appropriate $750,000 for the 2009-2010 fiscal year and $750,000 2010-2011 fiscal year this is being used for additional funding for certified senior centers.
House Judiciary III-Subcommittee
The three person House Judiciary III Subcommittee met to discuss HB 134: Assault State or Local Officer or Employee. This legislation would have raided the criminal offense of simply assault on an officer or employee of the state or a political subdivision of the state from a Class A1 misdemeanor to a Class I felony. Representative Tillis, Wiley and Mackey reviewed existing state laws that could address the concerns of the bill sponsor Representative Tucker. Staff advised and the members agreed that there are currently multiple statutes that could be used to protect correction officers from assault. The recommendation of the subcommittee is that this bill not be brought back to the full committee.
HB 134: Assault State or Local Officer or Employee-Tucker
An act to raise the criminal offense of simple assault on an officer or employee of the state or a political subdivision of the state from a Class A1 misdemeanor to a Class I felony.
This week the Senate Judiciary Committee met to take up SB 241: Alternative Testimony/Children and Adults with Disabilities. This bill would provide for alternative means of testimony for adults and children. This bill is very similar to a bill that passed the House this week that would permit children in a criminal case to use alternative means for testimony. The committee members requested that the two bills be compared and combined if possible. This bill will be reviewed and worked on and then brought back to the committee for vote.
SB 241: Alternative Testimony/Children and Adults with Disabilities-Purcell
This bill will provide and alternative means of testimony for adults and children with disabilities. This bill is a recommendation from the Committee on Autism Spectrum Disorder and Public Safety.
HB 456: Technical and Organization Changes/Certain DHHS Facilities-Insko.
This legislation makes technical and organizational changes to the law regarding the licensure and inspection of facilities for aged and disabled individuals.
HB 457: Recommended Appropriations MH/DD/SA Oversight Committee-Insko
This legislation comes out of the MH/DD/SA Oversight Committee. It includes all of the proposed appropriation requests.
HB 458: Recommendation of MH/DD/SA Oversight Committee-Insko
This legislation is the recommendations proposed by the MH/DD/SA Oversight Committee.
HB 548: School Violence Prevention Act
This legislation creates a standard policy that will address bullying in our school system.
HB 576: Allow LMEs To Inspect MH/DD/SA Facilities-Braxton
This legislation will empower authorized representatives of Local Management Entities to inspect licensed facilities that provide mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse services.
SB 522: Southeastern MH/DD/SA State Health Plan-Boseman
The bill authorizes the Southeastern Center for Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services to enroll its employees and retirees in the state health plan for teachers and state employees.
Additional Legislative News:
The Arc of North Carolina participated in two news conferences recently. The first was in connection with the NC Paid Sick Days Campaign.
HB 177: Healthy Families and Health Workplaces Act-Adams
This bill is the paid sick leave bill. This bill would allow covered employees to earn a minimum number of paid sick days each year. Covered workers would earn one hour of paid sick time for every thirty hours worked, up to a maximum of seven days per year.
The second was in connection with the NC Prevent School Violence Campaign. Representative Rick Glazier and Senator Julia Boseman introduced the School Violence Prevention Act this week. This legislation would standardize the anti-bullying policy for all of our school districts.