Last night, House and Senate budget negotiators came to an agreement on issues contained in the Health and Human Services budget, including funding for nursing home care. Budget conferees have agreed to meet in the middle on the funding cut, meaning the House's originally proposed 2.5 percent has been reduced to 1.25 percent (approximately $35 million). As previously reported, both chambers’ budgets had fully funded price level increases (inflationary increases), and that has not changed.
Barring any major holdups, the 2012-13 budget is expected to be finalized by late this evening to allow for the three-day cooling off period before the vote is taken on Friday and the 2012 Legislature can sine die. And while we have not quite reached the finish line, FHCA is extremely grateful to its members for their ongoing support both before and during this year’s session. Time and again, our members rose to the call and the voices of long term care were heard. Over 500 long term care professionals took part in FHCA's Lobby Wednesdays this session, sharing stories with lawmakers that resonated, as was made evident by the budget outcome.
As we enter this final week of the 2012 session, FHCA will continue to advocate for the remaining legislative issues that impact the long term care profession. Stay tuned for updates on the progress of the bills we're tracking.