NASW-NC Social Work Blog

Your source for the social work profession in North Carolina.

Legislative Session, Week 15

We are one week away from crossover! Any bills without appropriations that do not pass their respective chamber will be dead this legislative session. We are hearing rumors that the Senate budget will be out the week of May 20th.

Relevant bills with action:

HB 693 Eliminate Exemptions/Med Treatment/Minors: This bill requires notarized, written consent for treatment of minors for substance abuse, mental illness, STDs and pregnancy. Due to your swift calls to action from our legislative alert last week, this bill was removed from the Calendar on Wednesday and sent to the full Judiciary Committee. As it stands now, this committee does not plan to meet this week. Fingers crossed that this bill has died this session!
SB 683 Safe  Harbor/Victims of Human Trafficking: This bill would create a safe harbor for victims of human trafficking and prostituted minors. The bill was heard in committee this week but has not been sent to the floor.
SB 553 LME/MCO Enrollee Grievances & Appeals: This legislation makes changes to an LME/MCO’s grievance and appeals process. The bill passed Senate committee and should head to the floor.
SB 473 HealthCare Cost Reduction & Transparency: This bill creates more competition for health care services by providing hospital patients with more information about prices and billing. The bill also would change the make up of the oversight board of Community Care of NC (CCNC). This bill passed the Senate and was sent to the House.
HB 935 NC Pre-Kindergarten Law Changes: This bill lowers the requirement for Pre-K eligibility. This would reduce the number of kids on the wait list BUT does not allow any more in. The bill sponsors have said this is so the state is only funding what the state can afford. English proficiency is also no longer a high risk for needing Pre-K and these children would not eligible for Pre-K under this bill. This bill passed House and was sent to the Senate.
HB 217 Criminal Law/Procedure Amendments:  This bill would change several criminal laws including felonies committed by juveniles. It would have youth ages 15 and older to automatically go to Superior Court. A DA can decide if children 13 and older are heard in Superior Court. This bill passed the House and was sent to the Senate.
HB 585 PREA (Prison Rape Elimination Act) Compliance: This bill would bring us to compliance with Federal rules. This bill passed the House and was sent to the Senate.
HB 687 Homeless Shelters/Remove Age Limits: This bill would change building codes to allow children younger than 18 years of age in temporary overflow emergency shelters for the homeless. This bill passed the House and was sent to the Senate.
HB 716 Clarify Law/Prohibit Sex-Selective Abortion: The bill would prohibit abortion when the gender is the primary reason for seeking the abortion. The bill passed the House and was sent to the Senate.
HB 805 Ban Smoking in Foster Care Setting/Infants: This bill would ban smoking in foster care homes and cars where infants are present. This bill passed HHS and was sent to the House Judiciary Subcommittee A.
HB 722 Capital Procedure/Severe Disability: This bill would take the death penalty off the table for capital defendants when severe mental disability is present. The bill passed Judiciary Subcommittee B and was sent to the House Committee on Rules.
HB 670 DSS Study/Extend Foster Care to Age 21: This bill requires DSS to study extending the age of Foster Care to age 21. The bill passed the House and was sent to the Senate.
SB 321 Contain Counties’ Inmate Medical Costs: This bill would allow counties to utilize Medicaid for eligible prisoners. It also allows counties to reimburse providers when providing services for an inmate at a rate no more than 70% of the provider’s current charge. The bill passed the Senate.
SB 132 Health Curriculum/Preterm Birth: This legislation would provide students, starting in 7th grade, a curriculum that would include causes of  preterm births, including abortion. This bill passed committee and should be on the floor this week.

Relevant bills presented to the Governor this week:

SB 91 Prohibit Expunction Inquiry: This bill would prohibit employers, higher education and government offices from asking if a record has been expunged. It has passed the House and Senate and was sent to the Governor this week for signature.
HB 149 Caylee’s Law/Report Missing Children: This bill requires parents/guardians to report a missing child within 24 hours. Also puts in place penalties for individuals that knew about the missing child but did not report it. It is headed to Governor for signature.

Tax Reform Plan
Senators are starting to discuss their tax reform plan; though they have not filed a bill. Why is this important for social workers? Your services could be taxed under their plan! Poor and middle class families could also take the worst hit under their suggested plan. A website has been created by Senators to further educate on the proposed plan: http://www.nctaxcut.com/

What’s happening this week?
You can check the Legislative Calendar during the week for updates on what is being scheduled.

Sex Offender/Expand Residential Restrictions (H777) is Monday at 4pm in Judiciary Subcommittee B.
Medicaid Managed Care/Behavioral Health Svcs (H320) is Tuesday at 10am in House Health and Human Services.
Standardize Emergency Hospital Codes (H634) is Tuesday at 10am in House Health and Human Services.
Prevent Hazardous Drug Exposure (H644) is Tuesday at 10am in House Health and Human Services.
Study Medicaid Provider Hearings (H674) is Tuesday at 10am in House Health and Human Services.
Ed. Services for Children in PRTFs (H831) is Tuesday at 10am in House Education.
Mandate Autism Health Insurance Coverage (H498) is Tuesday at 1pm in House Insurance.
Ban Smoking in Foster Care Setting/Infants (H805) is Wednesday at 1oam in Judiciary Subcommittee A.
Human Trafficking (H855) is Wednesday at 10am in Judiciary Subcommittee A.
Modify Medicaid Subrogation Statute (H982) is Wednesday at 10am in Judiciary Subcommittee A.

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