Kansas Mental
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  • May 08, 2021 1:32 AM | Anonymous

    Veto Session Almost Over

    The Legislature is grinding its way toward adjourning the veto session in the wee hours of Saturday morning.  However, the omnibus budget was approved earlier this evening with the House passing CCR SB 159 98-21 and the Senate voting 26-12.  The debate on the budget legislation was remarkably brief, considering that the House and Senate crafted their negotiating positions through committee action alone – bypassing the process of passing bills through the full chambers prior to conference committee.  The Ways and Means / Appropriations conference committee hit the ground running at 9 am Thursday morning, meeting 9 times until reaching an agreement around 11:15 p.m.  Legislative staff worked most of the night to have the conference committee report ready for final chamber votes today.

    Highlights of the Omnibus Budget   Full summary link

    Human Services - Adding $31.1 million, including $20.6 million SGF, for the Human Services function and adopting GBA No. 3, Item 1, to delete $268.8 million, including $141.6 million SGF, to implement the Spring 2021 Consensus Caseloads. Other Major Adjustments include:

    ● Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services:

    ○ Adding $2.7 million, including $1.2 million SGF, for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) funding, and 10.0 FTE positions for CCBHC certification for FY 2022;

    ○ Adding $5.6 million, including $2.0 million SGF, for the Medicaid Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Technology Assisted (TA) waiver for FY 2022;

    ○ Adding $3.0 million, all SGF, for costs associated with the 988 Crisis Hotline, and adding language to lapse SGF funds associated with the 988 Crisis Hotline implementation, if federal funds are available for this purpose in FY 2022; and

    ○ Adding $9.6 million, including $4.3 million SGF, and adding language raising the Protected Income Level for HCBS Waivers and the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) from 150.0 percent to 300.0 percent of federal supplemental security income for FY 2022.

    ● Department of Labor - Adding $9.6 million, all SGF, to update the unemployment insurance benefit system and adding language requiring the agency use up to $250,000 to conduct an outside audit in compliance with Senate Sub. for Sub. For HB 2196 for FY 2022. This includes language requiring the use of federal funds if determined allowable;

    Key to the final agreement was adding $53 million to higher education appropriations in order to meet enough of the federal “maintenance of effort” requirements to assure Kansas’ eligibility for American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. 

    State employees did not get the 2.5% pay increase recommended by the House, but there are salary increases for the Judiciary branch that many say are long overdue.

    There were a number of last minute provisos added to the bill relating to topics like limiting contact tracing for purposes of individual privacy and prohibiting vaccine passports, the impacts of which will be unknown for now.

    There were also a couple of items added into the omnibus budget that had been line item vetoed by the Governor – including an agreed to change in the way that federal coronavirus aid is approved for State expenditures.

    These budget items are in addition to those passed in the mega-budget bill – Sub for HB 2007 prior to first adjournment the first week of April.

    The Legislature is still debating a couple of conference committees, but likely to adjourn in an hour or two. 

    Status of the State General Fund

    The HB 2007 approved budget resulted in an ending balance of $648.5 million in FY 2021 and $10.2 million in FY 2022. Change in economic conditions and federal stimulus have substantially changed that outlook in addition to legislative adjustments.

    Major Adjustments include:

    ● Revised consensus revenue estimates adding $319.8 million in FY 2021 and $41.2 million in FY 2022;

    ● The passage of SB 50, SB 47, and HB 2143 reducing estimated revenue by $108.5 million in FY 2022;

    ● Spring Human Services Caseloads reducing SGF expenditures by $189.5 million in FY 2021 and $141.6 million in FY 2022; and

    ● SB 159 adding $4.4 million in FY 2021 and $70.5 million for FY 2022 in expenditures above the Governor's recommendation as adjusted for GBA No. 3 and No. 4. The effect of these various adjustments results in a projected ending balance of $1.1 billion in FY 2021 and $542.1 million in FY 2022.


  • April 26, 2021 6:33 PM | Anonymous

    Sub for HB 2007 - the mega-budget bill for the 2021 session - was passed by the Legislature prior to First Adjournment and the Governor signed it with some line item vetoes on Monday, April 26.  Attached is a spreadsheet of the negotiated items from the conference committee on HB 2007.Senate Ways and Means returned Monday to review the new consensus revenue and expenditure estimates, and began to craft their Omnibus bill over a day and a half.  House Appropriations worked through its 49 page omnibus list in about 9 hours on Tuesday.  Here is the list of omnibus items being considered by the budget committees.  Two of the key items for the Coalition are the first year funding for the Certified Community Behavioral Health Centers program and startup funds for a 988 crisis system.  The 988 crisis line will be live July 2022 according to the federal legislation.  Will Kansas be ready?


  • January 13, 2021 9:25 PM | Anonymous

    The Governor’s State of the State speech was delivered remotely on January 12, due to the pandemic and the proposed budget was presented to a joint meeting of the House Appropriations and Senate Ways and Means Committee on the morning of January 13.  The Budget proposes two merge KDADS and DCF into a single Department of Human Services and includes new spending. 

    Department of Human Services Enhancements

    • $2.0mil for CMHC specialized services in Nursing Facilities for Mental Health
    • $5.0mil for statewide mobile response & stabilization
    • Provides community-based interventions and individualized care planning
    • $3.0mil for family crisis response and support
    • Provides any child/youth up to 18 in the community, or any young adult (ages 18 – 21) who is a foster care alum who is experiencing behavioral or psychiatric emergency with rapid, community-based crisis intervention services, regardless of health care insurance status
    • Department of Corrections Lansing facility
    • Substance abuse program implementation

    The Governor cites two key principles for her budget:

    1. Respond to the needs highlighted by the pandemic and protect core services, while keeping Kansas on the path of fiscal responsibility and economic growth

    • The FY22 Governor’s recommended budget will show investments in IT modernization, transportation, public safety, mental health services, education, and economic development tools

    2. Continue building on the work that has been done over the past few years to keep putting tools back into the budget toolbox

    • By remaining steadfast in the commitment to restore stability to the state’s finances over the past couple of years, we have been able to weather the financial uncertainty that the pandemic has brought to date

    Links to the Governors Budget information:   

    Budget Overview    GBR Volume 1      GBR Volume 2   

    A Tough Year

    It is worth noting that the Governor has prepared her budget recommendations based on forecasts for reduced revenues due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.  Every agency was asked to submit their agency budget with 10% reductions – then, the Governor and her team worked to reinstate portions or all of the 10% cuts for various agencies.  Then, limited enhancements were added. 

    So, it is very encouraging that Governor Kelly prioritized behavioral health needs for Kansans.  Now, the legislative process will take her budget proposal and dissect it, adding and removing funding items according to the priorities of legislators.  We are hopeful that the work of the Mental Health Modernization and Reform Committee over the interim will help to keep behavioral health top of mind for legislators in the next few weeks and months. 



  • January 12, 2021 9:04 AM | Anonymous

    The 2021 Legislative Session will be very unusual, with efforts to spread out in committee rooms and into the public galleries of the House chamber and limit physical access to members of the public and the press.  Masks are encouraged – seemingly more in the House than the Senate – and temperatures are checked as people enter the building.

    The first calendars indicate a quick start to legislative action, with the Judiciary and Tax committees already scheduled to hear bills addressing government actions relating to COVID-19 and tax legislation left hanging from the 2020 session.  Some are saying that regardless of the safety efforts, leaders are anxious to get several pieces of legislation passed quickly – before illness and quarantines may keep legislators out of the building and getting the right number of votes could become a challenge.  A constitutional amendment regarding abortion is expected along with possible liability protections for nursing homes. 

    Calendars are posted each day at https://kslegislature.org – select the third tab from the right on the blue banner.   Committee meeting audio can be streamed live by selecting Audio/Video from the top edge of the home screen, click on Statehouse Live and Archive from the dropdown list.  There are larger audio/video links for streaming the full House or Senate sessions mid-page on the right margin. 

    Full House and Senate sessions with action are to be limited this session – requiring fewer gatherings of the legislators within the House and Senate chambers.  There is a plan to bring representatives into the chamber in groups when votes are required.  The calendars will indicate when House or Senate deliberations are to occur.  Action on bills by the full House or Senate is indicated in the calendars by a line showing up under a list of bills to be debated under General Orders. 

    Many interim meetings have streamed live on YouTube – subscribe to the Kansas Legislature channel.  So far, it does not appear all the legislative committees will be appearing there, although the House and Senate sessions were available.  However, individuals who sign up to testify in committees will be provided a link to participate with audio and video. 

    The first day has been a little rocky – not all the links have worked well.  This means that those of us who are tracking the activities of the Legislature closely will have extra work to do. 


  • January 11, 2021 4:12 PM | Anonymous

    Monday, February 11, Kansas legislators gathered in the State Capitol to begin the work of the 2021 Kansas Legislative Session. Leadership elections were formalized – making history, as Representative Ron Ryckman, R-Olathe, is the first representative to win a third term as Speaker of the House and Dinah Sykes, D-Lenexa, is the first female elected to be the Senate Minority Leader.  There were speeches and welcomes all around.

    The leaders are as follows:

    SENATE:

    President - Ty Masterson, R-Andover

    Vice President - Richard Wilborn, R-McPherson

    Majority Leader - Gene Suellentrop, R-Wichita

    Assistant Majority Leader – Larry Alley, R-Winfield

    Majority Whip – Richard Hilderbrand, R-Galena

    Minority Leader - Dinah Sykes, D-Lenexa

    Assistant Minority Leader - Oletha Faust-Goudeau, D-Wichita

    Minority Whip – Pat Pettey, D-Kansas City

    Minority Agenda Chair - Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence

    Minority Caucus Chair – Jeff Pittman, D-Leavenworth

    HOUSE

    Speaker – Ron Ryckman, R-Olathe

    Speaker Pro Tem – Blaine Finch, R-Ottawa

    Majority Leader – Dan Hawkins, R-Wichita

    Assistant Majority Leader – Les Mason, R-McPherson

    Majority Whip – Blake Carpenter, R-Derby

    Majority Caucus Chair – Ken Rahjes, R-Agra

    Minority Leader – Tom Sawyer, D-Wichita

    Assistant Minority Leader – Jason Probst, D-Hutchinson

    Minority Whip – Stephanie Clayton, R-Overland Park

    Minority Caucus Chair – Barbara Ballard, D-Lawrence

    Minority Agenda Chair – Brandon Woodard, D-Lenexa

    Minority Policy Chair – Rui Xu, D-Westwood

    For more information about these legislators, check out http://kslegislature.org 


  • January 04, 2021 3:48 PM | Anonymous

    The Coalition will continue to meet by teleconference.  Members are urged to update their membership by logging into the website.  

    January 27, February 24, March 24, April 28, May 26, June 23, July 28, August 25, September 22, October 27, November 17, December 15

    Mental Health Advocacy Day - February 17 - Virtual Event

    Board Meetings:  12 noon quarterly the 4th Wednesdays (March 24, June 23, Sept. 22, Dec. 15)


  • February 11, 2019 12:37 PM | Anonymous

    Members of the public can listen to public hearings online by going to http://kslegislature.org, select the Audio/Video option at the top right of your screen, select “Statehouse Live and Archive” from the dropdown menu, then scroll through the committees until you find the one you want.  Note there is a box on the home page for Audio/Video Broadcast of the House and Senate chamber, but you will need to find Audio/Video at the top right of the screen instead.


  • February 11, 2019 12:31 PM | Anonymous

    The Kansas Legislature begins the process of budget hearings this week, with both the House and Senate subcommittees for Osawatomie and Larned State Hospitals beginning hearings today. 

    Senate Ways and Means Subcommittee on Social Services hearing - Room 548-S – 12 noon

    House Social Services Budget Committee hearing – Room 144-S – 3:30 p.m.

    State Hospitals documents:   KMHC Testimony HSSBC (same as Senate), Osawatomie State Hospital Budget Analysis Report, Larned State Hospital Budget Analysis Report.


  • February 08, 2019 12:23 PM | Anonymous

    Supporters of HB 2082 told members of the House Health and Human Services Committee that allowing pharmacists to administer injections could improve access to care for people with serious mental illness and those with other chronic conditions who have been prescribed injections.  According to Kristen Powell, Genoa Healthcare, Family Service and Guidance Center, many people are uncomfortable with self administration of injections.  She suggested HB 2082 would help patients stay on their medications by making it more convenient for them to receive them.  Many of our patients are on public assistance and this would allow greater convenience and avoid the cost of additional visits to physician’s offices or hospitals for administration of their injectable medications.  Jim Backes, Pharm.D., University of Kansas School of Pharmacy, testified that Injection administration is a standard part of training.  He asserted that pharmacists are fully trained and well equipped to administer medications.  The legislation is proposed by the Kansas Pharmacists Association and the National Association of Chain Drug Stores.  Read the notes from the hearing.    Read the notes from the hearing here.


  • February 04, 2019 12:26 PM | Anonymous

    The Task Force Report has been reviewed by a number of legislative committees in the opening weeks of the session.  The Task Force was created by the Kansas Legislature in 2017 and 2018.  The 2018 budget proviso directs the Task Force to create a strategic plan that addresses the recommendations of the 2018 Mental Health Task Force Report and also to ascertain the total number of psychiatric beds needed in Kansas to most effectively deliver mental health services and the location where such services would be best provided.  The Report includes the results of a statewide bed study commissioned by the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services that asserts Kansas needs up to 221 additional inpatient beds to serve its population.  The Report recommends adding 36 to 60 inpatient beds to the system in the next 24 months in order to end the moratorium on admissions at Osawatomie State Hospital, along with investments in the current state hospitals to provide quality treatment and stabilize staffing.  Task Force members envisioned beds that could be available regionally and in underserved areas.

    The 2019 Report includes a strategic plan detailing 23 recommendations that build on the 2018 Report – including action steps, timing considerations, implementation timeline, budget estimates, and the agencies and organizations likely to be responsible for implementation.

    Several members of the Task Force are members of the Kansas Mental Health Coalition.  Amy Campbell, KMHC Lobbyist, was asked to help present an overview of the report to several legislative committees, including Senate Ways and Means, Senate Public Health and Welfare, and the House Social Services Budget Committee.   Read the Mental Health Task Force OverviewKansas Health Institute overview of the process  2019 Mental Health Task Force Report


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