Gov. Bruce Rauner has again vetoed plans to prevent changes his administration want to make to in-home services aimed at keeping elderly Illinois residents out of nursing homes.
The Republican issued a veto message on Friday, saying the bill would reduce the ability “to assess and serve Illinois’ elderly and persons with disabilities.”
However, advocates of the proposal say changing in-home services could result in more expensive nursing home care. The plan would’ve put eligibility standards Rauner wants changed into law.
The bill received 36 Senate votes (enough for an override if everyone shows up), but just 68 House votes (three shy of an override).
* Veto message…
December 29, 2017
To the Honorable Members of
The Illinois House of Representatives,
100th General Assembly:
Today I veto House Bill 1424 from the 100th General Assembly, which would reduce the ability of the State to assess and serve Illinois’ elderly and persons with disabilities. This bill is similar to several pieces of legislation that have been discussed and debated over the last few years. This debate comes at a critical time, as Illinois’ aging population, ages 60 and over, is expected to increase by 57% from 2000 - 2030.
This bill prohibits the Department on Aging from implementing a new program, the Community Reinvestment Program (CRP), which aims to provide the non-Medicaid population of the Community Care Program (CCP) with federally mandated person-centered planning and community-based options. By limiting current services in statute, this bill prevents individual care coordinators from working with their clients on a case-by-case basis to meet the needs necessary for them to remain in their homes. Instead, they will receive only the services which have been available since the program’s inception, well over 30 years ago. While our current service delivery model is crucial to maintaining seniors in their homes and communities, this bill prohibits the department from implementing a more flexible array of service options.
The Department on Aging’s Community Care Program Services Task Force is currently working with advocates, providers, and legislators on a bipartisan plan to develop proactive solutions to serve this rapidly growing vulnerable population. They are tasked with reviewing current CCP services, and recommending solutions to reduce costs while simultaneously retaining our high quality of care. If HB 1424 were to become law, the work of this task force could be negatively impacted.
The bill also sets subjective restrictions on the implementation of the new Universal Assessment Tool (UAT) that is set to replace the outdated Determination of Need (DON) eligibility tool. Created to be objective and truly evaluate the needs of an elderly resident, this bill restricts the Department’s ability to implement the Universal Assessment Tool by guaranteeing eligibility for community-based services for current CCP participants regardless of whether they qualify for services under the UAT. This will limit our ability to receive federal matching funds and potentially put our federal waiver at risk.
Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return House Bill 1424, entitled AN ACT concerning public aid”, with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.
* From SEIU Healthcare Illinois Home Care Division and the Illinois Alliance for Retired Americans…
With today’s veto of House Bill 1424, Gov. Rauner has once again demonstrated his complete lack of empathy, compassion and concern for some of the most vulnerable in our communities. His veto of the bill continues the path of destruction to human services for children, seniors and people with disabilities launched when he first took office.
HB 1424 protected the 80,000 seniors in the Community Care Program from massive cuts, reductions in care, and a full-scale dismantling of the program by the governor. Instead of a successful program that has existed for years, the governor has proposed herding this group of seniors into an unproven and untested patchwork system that included subjecting seniors to Uber vouchers, food coupons and maid services.
Even more revealing of the governor’s contempt is his choice to veto the bill during the holiday season when citizens are celebrating and counting their blessing over the year. We, along with our allies who fight to protect seniors and the legislators who passed HB 1424, hoped that Rauner would see the light after the outcry from seniors over the proposed changes to the Community Care Program.
Unfortunately, Rauner is hellbent on moving an agenda that has done nothing but proven his failure as a leader.
* Pritzker campaign…
This past Friday, Bruce Rauner quietly vetoed a bill that protected 80,000 Illinoisans receiving in-home care through the Community Care Program.
Rauner’s veto of HB 1424 follows multiple attempts by the failed governor to dismantle the Community Care Program. This latest effort was carried out on the Friday between Christmas and New Year’s, as Rauner once again tried to hide his failure to protect Illinois seniors.
“While seniors were enjoying the holidays with family, Bruce Rauner tried to dismantle their ability to live with dignity and receive care in their homes,” said Pritzker campaign spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh. “Rauner closed out the year doing what he does best: undercutting the tools Illinoisans need to build better lives and avoiding transparency at all costs.”
…Adding… Sen. Daniel Biss…
“Gov. Rauner’s platform relies on attacking Middle Class and working families and his latest attempts to dismantle the Community Care Program remind us that even seniors aren’t immune from his right-wing ideological agenda. Unlike Gov. Rauner, I believe every Illinoisan deserves to age with dignity and security. That’s why I organized my Senate colleagues against Gov. Rauner’s proposed budget cuts and reductions in care and why I’m urging him to change course and sign HB 1424 today.”
…Adding… Chris Kennedy…
It’s no surprise that Governor Rauner vetoed HB 1424. He failed to appoint AARP or SEIU Healthcare members to the Community Care Program Services Task Force in an effort to silence advocates for our senior community so he could get away with starving the programs our seniors rely on to stay in their homes and access health care. Well, we cannot be silenced. We need our Democratic-controlled legislature to mobilize and lead an override of this veto. We cannot let Rauner continue to destroy government services and programs that ensure our most basic needs.