AUCD Legislative News In Brief

November 3, 2014

AUCD Legislative News In Brief
 
    November 3, 2014   |  Vol. XIV, Issue 44
  
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Congressional Schedule

The House and Senate remain in recess until after the November 4 election. They will return on November 12 for the start of a short "lame duck" session. Potential action important to the disability community during lame duck includes FY 2015 appropriations, disability treaty and ABLE Act.

Elections

Election day is tomorrow, November 4. AUCD's Election Guide provides information about the candidates in your state/district as well as information about where to vote.  Several disability and civil rights groups have resources about voting and voting rights. The Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund and National Association of Council on Developmental Disabilities have partnered to create OneVoteNow.org, a project that seeks to restore the rights of all people with disabilities to vote. The Sibling Leadership Network has also published information on how siblings can support their brothers and sisters with disabilities to get to the polls. To learn more about voting rights or to report a barrier to access your polling place, visit 866ourvote.org. Find your polling place and information on candidates here.  

Budget

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) told Politico that his priorities for the 114th Congress include changes to the budget process and the long-term budget outlook. Specifically, McCarthy would like to move to a two-year biennial budgeting process and increase the window of time that the Congressional Budget Office analyzes legislation from 10 years to 20. These comments underscore what AUCD expects from Congress in 2015: a focus on the nation's long-term budget and programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, with potential return of significant budget fights and reforms through the budget reconciliation process.

Appropriations

Representatives Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Suzann DelBene (D-WA) are circulating  Dear Colleague and sign-on letters calling for Congressional leadership to ensure that funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is restored to pre- sequester levels in any omnibus or continuing resolution to finish out the remainder of 2015. They argue that sustained funding for the NIH will ensure that the United States continues to lead the world in biomedical research.

National Council on Disability Policy Progress Report

Since its inception, the National Council on Disability (NCD) has reported on the status of people with disabilities in the United States of America. The 2014 review of National Disability Policy: A Progress Report continues that tradition, providing policymakers, advocates and other stakeholders with an overview of the progress the United States has made promoting and protecting the rights of individuals with disabilities. The report also identifies opportunities to promote public policies that contribute to a more inclusive environment. This year NCD focuses on seven key areas: the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD), employment access and inclusion, subminimum wage, education outcomes, Medicaid managed care, mental health care, and data trends in disability policy.

Minimum Wage and Overtime Pay for Direct Care Workers

Leaders of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) recently met with officials from the U.S. Department of Labor to discuss the Fair Labor Standards Act regulation as it applies to home care workers, including their recent enforcement delay (see October 13 In Brief) and state action to comply with the rule in their Medicaid programs. For resources on the rule, see the Department's recently updated resource page. Resources include new guidance in response to questions about how the Rule impacts shared living programs and joint employment. Several disability groups have also partnered to develop a Fact Sheet and specific Action Steps for states advocates to preserve Medicaid services, particularly self-directed programs.

AUCD Annual Conference

The AUCD Annual Conference is next week! We are still adding exciting speakers, especially to the Wednesday morning plenary session for the post-election analysis and what to expect in the 114th Congress. After the plenary, AUCD members will head to Capitol Hill. If you have not yet made your appointment, there is still time to schedule your Wednesday afternoon visits with your members of Congress! Please check AUCD's online congressional directory for information about your Members and their Committee assignments.  If you have questions or need assistance, contact Kim Musheno at kmusheno@aucd.org.

Editor's Note: In Brief will not be published next week during the AUCD Annual Conference. In Brief will return on November 17.

 

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For definitions of terms used in In Brief, please see AUCD's Glossary of Legislative Terms.
For copies of this and previous issues of Legislative News In Brief please visit the Public Policy Page of the AUCD website:
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