AFA Update- Tuesday, March 17-Wednesday, March 18, 2015- Public hearings and Supplemental budget votes

This week the Appropriations committee held work sessions and public hearings on with the Judiciary, Transportation and Insurance and Financial Services committees. As well as work session on two supplemental budget bills one regarding DHHS and the other the Judicial branch and the Office of the Attorney General. Below you find testimony and audio from all hearings and the work sessions as well as links to annotated copies of the supplemental budget bills. These contain detail of the votes taken in committee.

  Time Committee Highlights Audio Testimony
Tuesday, March 17 1:00 PM Judiciary AG’s Office, Judiciary, Indigent Legal Services, closure of Madawaska Court Audio Testimony
3:00 PM Transportation State Police
Wednesday, March 18 1:00 PM Insurance and Financial Services Audio Testimony
3:00 PM Appropriations (only) Cascade, appropriations limitations (LD 1 PL 2005), employee attrition
Work Session

Supplemental Budget

LD 232 (Judicial and Attorney General) and LD 236 (DHHS)

LD 232- Judiciary and AG

AFA took unanimous votes in favor of nearly every item in LD 232. Including:

  • Nearly $19K for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner
  • $330K for increased guardian ad litem costs and $250K for increased psychological exams
  • $442K for increased or unbudgeted operating expenses at the combined Judicial Centers
  • $1.7M for increased Indigent Legal Defense

Still tabled are items pertaining to:

  • Positions and financial orders with the Office of the Attorney General
    • Funding for the federal match to run the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit
    • 2 Child Protective prosecutors
    • 2 Child Support prosecutors
    • A Homicide prosecutor
  • $22K for the Maine Indian Tribal State Commission

No final action was taken on LD 232.

LD 236- DHHS

AFA took unanimous votes in favor of nearly every item in LD 236. Including:

  • $1.1M for Consent Decree services
  • 29 positions for the Riverview Psychiatric Center (RPC)
  • Funding for safety, training and accreditation at RPC
  • Moved out a proposal to spend $1.8M for health homes based on the Department’s representation that the funding is no longer needed as they have sufficient resources to make the payments
  • $1.5M to continue enhanced primary care physician payments
  • $20M to offset the Department’s failed attempt to implement a change in cash management
  • $4.0M to correct a federal audit finding

Still tabled are items pertaining to:

  • The Fund for a Healthy Maine
  • Transparency language regarding the operation of RPC
  • The reorganization of 2 Mental Health Worker II positions to Acuity Specialists
  • Drugs for the Elderly
  • Sidewalk repair at RPC

No final action was taken on LD 236.

Schedule

The AFA committee will hold a public hearing tomorrow afternoon at 1:00 PM on LD 576, An Act To Adjust Appropriations and Allocations from the General Fund and Other Funds for the Expenditures of State Government Related to Position Changes for the Fiscal Years Ending June 30, 2015, June 30, 2016 and June 30, 2017

This is another supplemental budget bill put forward by the Governor. This one contains $1.2M in position reclassifications.

The full schedule is here.

As always you can listen here or join us in Room 228.

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