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Long Term Care Imperative Bills Continue to Make Headway at State Capitol

On April 13, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

We have now passed second committee deadline in which bills must have been heard in all policy committees in both the Minnesota House and Minnesota Senate in order to be considered further this legislative session. Our Long Term Care Imperative priorities, which include a funding increase for home and community-based services, senior care workforce promotional campaign, moratorium funding for nursing homes and long term care finance modeling, have all met the deadline. Here is a status report on these bills: 

House GOP Releases Budget Targets

On April 13, 2016 by Jodi Boyne

Minnesota House Republicans released their budget targets last week, spending a majority of the $900 million state surplus on taxes and transportation. The Senate has not yet released its budget targets. For details on the House budget targets and what they mean for our priorities, see Senior Vice President of Advocacy Kari Thurlow's analysis on Capitol News Update

Advocacy Alert: Tell Congress to Support Aging Services Technologies

On April 6, 2016 by Jodi Boyne

There are several bills before Congress that would advance technology solutions, such as Internet access, remote monitoring and telehealth, to help older adults age more independently in their homes. We need you to contact your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative to tell them to support four bills:

Key Long Term Care Priorities Advance at State Capitol

On April 6, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

A busy week at the State Capitol came to an end with good news for several of our core legislative priorities. Here is an update on where these bills stand:

Issue Spotlight: Paid Family and Medical Leave

On March 30, 2016 by Kari Thurlow

A statewide coalition of working families, faith communities, labor and nonprofit organizations kicked off a campaign earlier this year to push for paid family leave for all working Minnesotans. DFL lawamkers have made it a top-priority issue for this legislative session, and a proposal to provide all Minnesota workers up to 24 weeks of paid leave a year (12 weeks for medical leave and 12 weeks for pregnancy leave) has been working its way through the legislative process.

HCBS Increase Advances at Capitol

On March 30, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

The Best Life Alliance bill that provides a five percent increase for Home and Community-Based Services passed its first legislative hurdles and met a key committee deadline.

Working Group on Elderly Waiver Reform Begins Design Work

On March 30, 2016 by Kari Thurlow

One of our top policy priorities is to develop a proposal to reform the state’s Elderly Waiver program so that it more adequately covers the cost of care and incentivizes quality improvement. Our goal is to develop a proposal to discuss with legislative candidates during the election cycle later this year and to introduce a reform bill in the 2017 legislative session. 

LeadingAge Minnesota Members Attend PEAK Leadership Summit

On March 23, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

LeadingAge Minnesota members last week attended the annual LeadingAge PEAK Leadership Summit in Washington, DC. PEAK offers an opportunity for senior care providers and business leaders to network with peers across the county, learn about the big picture issues facing LeadingAge members and meet with Minnesota’s congressional delegation on Capitol Hill.

Issue Spotlight: Mayo Hospital Proposes Changes to Swing Bed Law

On March 23, 2016 by Kari Thurlow

It appears a bill proposing changes to Minnesota’s swing bed law will be debated at the State Capitol this legislative session. While we have not seen the final bill language as of the publication deadline for this week’s Advantage, we do have concerns with the legislation that we have shared with the hospital system bringing it forward and one of the bill authors. The following article provides an update on this issue, including a request for members to contact their lawmakers to share their concerns regarding this legislation.

Governor Dayton Releases Budget Recommendations

On March 15, 2016 by Jodi Boyne

An increased investment in home and community-based services failed to make Governor Mark Dayton’s priority list this session. In his supplemental budget proposal released on Tuesday, the Governor proposes to spend $698 million of the $900 million budget surplus. A majority of the funding is targeted for broadband infrastructure, education, tax credits for working families and racial equity programs.

Advocacy in Action: More Than 70 Legislative Tours

On March 9, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

We asked LeadingAge Minnesota members to accept the challenge of hosting at least 50 lawmaker tours before the start of the 2016 legislative session, and you conquered it! Our members hosted more than 70 tours with lawmakers and helped kick-start our advocacy agenda into action.

Paid Family and Medical Leave Act Introduced in Minnesota Legislature

On March 9, 2016 by Jodi Boyne

Citing an increased need for employees to take care of their newborn babies and aging parents, a coalition of DFL legislators introduced a bill that would provide up to 12 weeks of paid family and sick leave to all Minnesotans. 

And They’re Off! Minnesota Legislative Session Begins

On March 9, 2016 by Kari Thurlow

The 2016 legislative session convened yesterday. This is the short legislative session of the biennium, and lawmakers will have around 10 weeks to complete their work. The following is a preview of the session, including top priorities, our agenda, ways to get involved in advocacy, key dates and new faces at the State Capitol.

Awareness to Action: Face Aging MN 2.0 Launches

On March 9, 2016 by Gayle Kvenvold

When we launched Face Aging MN in collaboration with our partner in the Long Term Care Imperative last January, our initial goal was to get people’s attention. We sparked a conversation on aging, moving beyond stakeholders in long term care to a much broader public debate. Now it’s time to convert awareness to action.

Minnesota Financial Outlook Good, But Growth Slows

On March 2, 2016 by Kari Thurlow

Minnesota Management & Budget last week released the state’s latest budget forecast. Overall, the state continues to have adequate resources to fund our current budget commitments but there have been some changes since November.

Lawmakers Continue to Visit LeadingAge Minnesota Members

On March 2, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

February may be over, but that is not stopping LeadingAge Minnesota members from continuing to host their lawmakers! Over the past week, five more members hosted lawmaker tours and three more tours are scheduled in the coming week.

Thank You Members for Participating in Host Your Lawmaker Month

On February 23, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

February is coming to a close, and we are happy to say that many of our members participated in Host Your Lawmaker month. Over the past few weeks, 24 lawmakers have visited LeadingAge Minnesota communities, bringing us close to 70 tours since the end of the last legislative session! 

Public Officials of the Year Participate in Institute

On February 17, 2016 by Jodi Boyne

Senator Tony Lourey (DFL-Kerrick) and Representative Joe Schomacker (GOP-Luverne) joined LeadingAge Minnesota at its Institute and Expo last week to present the Caregiver of the Year award. Speaking to a crowd of nearly 1,600 attendees during the first day’s General Session, Lourey and Schomacker each took time to honor those who make a difference in the lives of seniors in all the places they call home.

Save the Date: March 21 is District Day at the Capitol

On February 3, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

As we announced in January as part of our 2016 Grassroots: Be the Voice Campaign, we are bringing back Day at the Capitol! Although the State Capitol is still under construction, we will have the opportunity to meet with lawmakers in the State Office Building and the new Senate Office Building during session this year.

Be the Voice: February is Host Your Lawmaker Month

On January 26, 2016 by Danielle Salisbury

LeadingAge Minnesota members have hosted more than 50 tours with lawmakers at adult day services centers, assisted living communities and care centers across Minnesota since the 2015 legislative session ended. Tours are extremely impactful and show lawmakers firsthand the important work we do every day on behalf of those we serve and the challenges we face in delivering high quality care. In February, we are launching Host Your Lawmaker month as part of our Be the Voice grassroots advocacy campaign.

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