131st Legislature Adjourns Sine Die

The 131st Maine Legislature adjourned sine die (i.e., “without day”) around 5:00 am Wednesday morning. This concludes a record-long legislative session lasting over a month longer than statutory adjournment. Notably, the general effective date for nonemergency laws passed during this First Special Session is October 25, 2023. 
There is a lot to celebrate for long term care this session, including:
·        $25 million in supplemental payments (already distributed), and the deadline for use of funds extended to June 30, 2024, for the last two rounds of supplemental funding 
·        $10 million in PNMI-C High Maine Care Utilization
·        $29 million for rate reform 
·        Creation of an Extraordinary Circumstance (ECA) program for at-risk facilities
·        Passage of LD 451, An Act to Ensure Transparent and Accountable Temporary Nurse Agencies
·        Passage of LD 1474, Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services to Expedite Reimbursement of Nursing Facilities” 
·        Forcing the carry over of LD 1575, An Act to Promote Quality and Innovation in Nursing and Residential Care Facilities
·        This was DHHS's rate reform bill we had significant concerns with changes in the statutory language without a new rate system in place
·        And much more!
Looking forward, we have begun strategizing for next year's short session. The cloture (i.e., submission deadline) for bills in the next session is September 29, 2023. 
On behalf of the Maine Health Care Association, thank you to all of the advocates who responded to action alerts, contacted legislators, and collaborated with us on drafting legislation and testimony. It truly takes a village, and I am grateful to the many members who've helped improve long term care policies in Maine.

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