Although we are only 2 days into the new session, several bills relevant to people with disabilities have already been filed. If you click on the bill links below, it will take you to the page of the General Assembly website about the bill. There you can view the full bill text, see a full list of co-sponsors, and keep track of the bill as it proceeds.
HB 2, Protect Health Care Freedom (Barnhart, Stam, Hollo, Murry sponsors). This bill seeks to prevent the implementation of the Affordable Care Act ("ACA", i.e., healthcare reform legislation) provision that mandates individual health insurance. It also mandates that the Attorney General shall either join or bring a lawsuit challenging this provision. This bill was filed on the first day and heard in the Judiciary I committee on the second day of the session. It will likely be voted upon in the full House next week. DRNC is opposed to this bill. The removal of the individual mandate jeopardizes the pre-existing condition mandate, and undercuts the provisions of the ACA that will control costs and keep premiums affordable for everyone.
HB 4, Disapprove Closure of Dorothea Dix Hospital (Weiss, Ross, Jackson sponsors). This bill disapproves the closure of Dorothea Dix Hospital. It does not address where the funds to operate the hospital would be come from. The bill was filed on the first day of the session and was referred to the House Rules committee.
SB 8, No Cap on Number of Charter Schools (Stevens sponsor). This bill eliminates the existing cap of 100 charter schools. It was filed on Thursday in the Senate and has not yet been referred to a committee. DRNC will be following this bill carefully and advocating for language to protect children with disabilities from discrimination.
Stay tuned for bill updates next week!