AB 713 (Chu) – CCRC transfers
This bill would require CCRCs to use an assessment tool when determining whether a resident needs to transfer within the community to a higher level of care and it would require the Continuing Care Contracts Branch to review a disputed transfer and determine if the transfer was appropriate and necessary. CALA’s CCRC Subcommittee closely watched this bill. DSS is expected to release an implementation plan shortly.
AB 2400 (Kalra) Personal income taxes: voluntary contribution fund: Alzheimer’s disease research
CALA was pleased to support this bill sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association, which extends the voluntary tax contributions to the California Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementia Research Voluntary Tax Contribution Fund through January 1, 2025.
AB 2719 (Irwin) Elderly LGBTQ Inclusion
Governor Brown has signed this bill into law. Sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression will be added to the list of factors that would allow older individuals to be given priority consideration for programs and services administered through the California Department of Aging.
AB 3098 (Friedman) RCFE emergency plans
Disaster plans have long been required. Now, they’re being strengthened. AB 3098, authored by Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Glendale) and sponsored by CALA, was signed by Governor Brown and will take effect January 1, 2019. The goal is to strengthen emergency preparedness across the state and clarify applicability to RCFEs and CCRCs alike.
CALA applauds Assemblymember Friedman for championing these important enhancements.
SB 219 (Wiener) – LGBT rights
CALA-supported SB 219 was signed by the Governor earlier this week and will take effect on January 1, 2018. CALA has long supported warm, welcoming environments for all our seniors and is pleased to have been able to work with Senator Scott Wiener (D-SF) and Equality California on this bill to clarify LGBT resident rights. Working collaboratively with Senator Wiener, CALA was able to secure amendments that deleted a new private right of action, and added important clarifications around definitions, confidentiality, and other operational considerations. These changes enabled us to support the bill. We are preparing detailed compliance information for members and will discuss this in more detail during the Fall Conference & Trade Show.
SB 294 (Hernandez) – Hospices: palliative care
Governor Brown signed this CALA-supported bill that will allow a licensed hospice to provide services, including palliative care, to a patient with a serious illness even if the patient continues to receive curative treatment. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2018, until January 1, 2022, when it will sunset. The Department of Public Health will be gathering data from providers each year while it is in effect and will be convening a stakeholder meeting on or before June 1, 2021, meeting to discuss the results of the information collected.
SB 449 (Monning) – CNA dementia training
The governor has signed this CALA-supported, Alzheimer’s Association-sponsored bill, which requires two hours of training specific to dementia care be included as part of the 60 hours of training for certified nurse assistants (CNAs). CNAs working in RCFEs are already required to have twelve initial hours of dementia-specific training and eight hours annually. This new legislation is a start on providing better training for a profession that is a very important part of the long-term care delivery system.
SB 833 (McGuire) Emergency alerts: evacuation orders
CALA-supported SB 833 was signed by Governor Brown and requires the Office of Emergency Services to develop voluntary guidelines for cities and counties for alerting and warning the public of an emergency and develop training.
SB 1292 (Hueso) Alzheimer’s Disease
The goal of this bill changed some during the legislative process. The bill signed by Governor Brown requires that on or before January 1, 2021, the Center for Healthy Communities, within the Department of Public Health, update the 2009 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures in California: Current Status and Future Projections to quantify the burden of Alzheimer’s disease on at-risk and underrepresented populations, including African Americans, Asian-Pacific Islanders, Latinos, Hispanics, and women.
AB 853 (Choi) – CCRC pooling contracts
This bill would authorize CCRC “pooling” contracts where entrance fee repayment is contingent upon resale of the next unit, rather than the resident’s specific unit. It would also make changes to the timing of construction approvals and use of surety bonds to satisfy liquid reserve obligations. This bill has not been heard in committee and is now a “two-year bill” meaning it won’t be considered until next year, if at all. CALA’s CCRC Subcommittee is watching this bill.
AB 859 (Eggman) – Lower standard of proof for elder abuse
CALA was part of a successful effort to defeat a bill that would have lowered the standard of proof in elder abuse cases when a judge has found intentional destruction of evidence (“spoliation”). In his veto message, Governor Brown writes, “Currently, when judges find spoliation, they have numerous sanctions at their disposal which they can impose against an offending party… Accordingly, I don’t believe changing the standard of proof is warranted.” This was our primary argument in opposition to the bill and the Governor agreed. Additionally, this bill would have harmed all providers, not just the “bad actors,” by incentivizing lawyers to allege spoliation in all elder abuse cases in an effort to lower the standard of proof and get enhanced damages and attorney fees. Providers would have faced significant additional costs of fighting those frivolous claims.
Thank you to the many CALA members who wrote letters in support of SB 219 and opposing AB 859…your voice was heard!
AB 1437 (Patterson) – CBC associations and six-bed license
The Governor vetoed AB 1437 which would have allowed for a streamlined process to associate employees with multiple communities, saving licensees and CCLD staff a significant amount of time and paperwork.
AB 1955 (Limon) Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia public awareness campaign
This bill would promote community awareness of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and encourage early diagnosis. This bill failed to make it out of the Assembly Appropriations committee.
AB 2324 (Rubio) Elder or dependent adult abuse: public shaming
This bill was originally intended to make the taking, transmission, or dissemination of an image of an elder or dependent adult that shames, degrades, humiliates, or otherwise harms the personal dignity of the elder or dependent adult an act of elder abuse. While CALA is supportive of the intent, we were working with the author and sponsor on amendments to focus the bill on the objectionable conduct the author and sponsor are trying to target, while avoiding criminalizing legitimate care and reporting actions, as well as something as simple as a daughter taking a picture of her now frail and elderly father that another person might consider undignified. This bill failed to pass out of the Assembly Appropriations Committee.
AB 2744 (Reyes) RCFE Referral Agencies
This bill would bring consumer protection, transparency, and oversight to the growing senior care referral agency industry in California. Consumers would know how the referral agency is paid, that referrals may be limited to facilities that pay the referral agency, that their contact information will be shared, how the agency determines an appropriate referral, if the agency has ever visited the facilities to which it refers, and what training or experience referral agents have. In addition, referral agencies would have to register with DSS, among other things. This bill failed to make it out of the Assembly Appropriations Committee.
AB 3088 (Chu) CCRC actuarial studies
The Governor vetoed AB 3088 (Chu), the CALA-opposed bill that would have required CCRCs to conduct actuarial studies regardless of the types of contracts they offer, a maintenance and repair review every five years, and a detailed timeline for when repairs would be made, among other things. In his veto message, the Governor writes, “An actuarial study may be one indication of financial viability, but the Department of Social Services uses a variety of methods to monitor the long term fiscal health of these communities. Instead of mandating an actuarial study be done by every Continuing Care Retirement Community, the department will continue to work with residents and management to determine appropriate means to measure fiscal viability.”
AB 3200 (Kalra) SSI/SSP rate increase
This bill would have reinstated the cost-of-living adjustment and increase the amount of aid paid under the State Supplementary Program (SSP) to individuals and couples to equal 100% of the 2018 federal poverty level. This bill failed to make it out of the Senate Appropriations committee.